Driver held hand of cyclist killed on Sunderland road

Edward Peverley at Newcastle Crown Court.
Edward Peverley at Newcastle Crown Court.
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A MOTORIST held the hand of a cyclist he had knocked down minutes before they were both hit by another driver, a court heard.

Michael Elton told police he had not realised he had hit Stan Coates until he heard a “thud” against his black Corsa on Burdon Lane, Sunderland, in October 2012.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the 25-year-old driver got straight out of his car, phoned the emergency services and stayed with Mr Coates, 55, as they waited for an ambulance.

Elton said it was while he was waiting in the road with the injured cyclist they were both ploughed into by 21-year-old Edward Peverley’s white Corsa.

Mr Coates, who suffered a sore knee and wrist after the first smash, died as a result of multiple fractures and injuries in the early hours of the following morning.

Elton told police he had just finished a shift at Morrisons supermarket and was heading home shortly after 4pm when he hit Mr Coates.

He said: “I was with him, speaking to him, telling him to keep breathing and the ambulance would be there soon.

“I was holding his hand.

“I took a notepad out of my back pocket and I told him I would write down my details and give them to him so he didn’t think I was nicking off.

“I got to writing down my name. I started to write my second name and suddenly something hit us.

“It flung us against a bush at the side of the road.

“I heard him screaming.

“I got up and noticed my wrist was hurting. I got myself up and could still hear him screaming.

“I tried to walk towards him, my leg was hurting.

“I limped over to where he was and I went towards him. I could see another car had hit him.”

The court heard Peverley had also not realised he had hit Mr Coates.

He told police: “I saw a black Corsa with hazard lights on. I started to slow down because of the car and becaue the sun was shining over the top of the hill towards me.

“I had the sun visor down but it was still difficult to see. As I was driving I heard a noise and stopped.

“I looked in the rear view mirror and saw a man lying on the road.”

Peverley also got straight out of his car and stayed at the scene to help until the emergency services arrived.

Mr Coates was taken to hospital by helicopter where he died from his injuries.

Prosecutors claim both drivers were “blinded” by the sun when they hit Mr Coates and had not taken appropriate steps to make driving in such conditions safe.

The court heard accident investigators estimate Elton may have been travelling at up to 50mph and Peverley at less than 40mph on the 60mph road.

Elton, of Rothbury Road, Newton Hall, and Peverley, of Hetton Moor Farm, Easington Lane, both deny causing death by careless driving.

The court heard that despite Mr Coates surviving the first collision, prosecutors say both drivers are to blame for his death.

The trial continues.