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Triple death crash driver was speeding says coroner
A DRIVER from Kidderminster was speeding when he crashed his “powerful” car into a tree, killing himself, his sister and his partner.
Luke Morris, 22, of Robin Court, partner Elizabeth Stanley, 24, of Foxholes, Kidderminster and sister Rebecca Townsend, 26, of Pershore, died in the crash along the B4084 near Pershore at about 12.35am on Saturday, June 9.
An inquest concluded yesterday with a verdict of accidental death for all three, after Mr Morris had lost control of his Nissan 200SX on a left-hand bend after travelling at high speed.
A blood test on Mr Morris revealed he had 47mg of alcohol in 100ml of blood. The legal limit is 80mg but Worcestershire Coroner Geraint Williams said “even a single drink can have an effect on ability to handle a motor car”.
West Mercia Police collision investigator, PC Martin Williams, told Worcestershire Coroner’s Court, in Stourport, he had calculated the car could have been travelling about 74mph, exceeding the 50mph speed limit.
No-one witnessed the crash. The court heard, however, Christopher Finch, who was standing outside Pershore Working Men’s Club, saw the “loud and giggly” group get into the car.
He said: “They drove through Pershore at 30mph but suddenly there was a loud swoosh and scream of the engine as the vehicle accelerated violently and aggressively. It made one hell of a noise as it left Pershore.
“Shortly after I saw the emergency services travel in the same direction.”
Mr Morris, an electrician and Miss Stanley, a bakery worker, died at the scene and Mrs Townsend died later in A&E at Worcestershire Royal Hospital. Mrs Townsend’s husband Craig survived the crash but was left in a serious condition.
A post-mortem said Mr Morris died of head and skull injuries, Miss Stanley of cardio respiratory failure and multiple trauma, including high transection of the spinal cord and Mrs Townsend of shock and haemorrhage and multiple trauma.
Summing up, Mr Williams said: “This was a tragedy for all occupants of the car and their families. High speed and alcohol caused these deaths.”
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