LONG grass on a dual carriageway central reservation may have blocked a car driver’s view of a motorcyclist just before a crash that claimed two lives, an inquest heard.
Bernard Gage and Richard Sinclair both died instantly from multiple injuries in the high speed crash on the A412 at George Green on May 4.
Car driver Mr Gage was attempting to turn right from the A412 onto Wexham Park Lane when he cut across the path of Mr Sinclair’s Honda motorbike. The motorcycle struck Mr Gage’s green BMW with such force it sent it spinning over onto its roof.
Collision investigator Simon Bishop told the inquest he believed 59-year-old delivery driver Mr Gage, of Long Furlong Drive, Slough, would have had his view of Mr Sinclair partially obscured by the length of the grass on the central reservation.
He said: “As the BMW approached the break in the central reservation, the view would have been restricted by the grass on the central reservation. It wouldn’t have obscured the view, but made it more difficult to identify. The grass would have offered some obstruction.
“A traffic management officer contacted me the next day. It was due to be cut within the next day or so from the collision, and I believe it was done.”
He added: “I find it unlikely he was aware of the motorbike.”
PC Bishop said the controls on Mr Gage’s car froze when the electrics cut out at the moment of impact. They suggested he was travelling at 22mph and the rev counter showed 1,200RPM.
PC Bishop said subsequent tests carried out on a similar vehicle said this combination was only possible if the car was in fourth gear.
He told the inquest he believed, as a result of reconstructions carried out by police, Mr Gage had not brought his car to a halt on the slip road and had pulled out into the path of Mr Sinclair’s motorcycle having been satisfied there was no approaching traffic and the carriageway was clear.
Witnesses told the inquest they believed 41-year-old Mr Sinclair, a panel technician from Griffin Close, Slough, was travelling at between 60 and 80mph just before the crash.
PC Bishop said he was unable to establish Mr Sinclair’s precise speed but experience of dealing with previous high speed collisions led him to believe witnesses’ estimates were accurate.
He added Mr Sinclair would have had less than a second to react and avoid hitting the car as it crossed his path.
Coroner Richard Hulett ruled both men died as a result of a road traffic collision.