Death crash lorry driver is banned

A1 at Blyth
A1 at Blyth

A cycle time trial event on the A1 was scrapped after a competitor was hit and killed by a lorry at Bawtry, Nottingham Crown Court heard.

Lorry driver Nigel Drake, 43, failed to see cyclist Andrew Ridsdale, also 43, until too late and hit him from behind.

Drake admitted causing death by careless driving and was given a suspended prison sentence and driving ban.

The accident happened just before 9am on Sunday 18th March last year.

The victim, from Mirfield in West Yorkshire, was riding a bright yellow racing bike and wearing an orange tabard.

“He was wearing the correct, distinctive gear and a helmet,” said Dawn Pritchard, prosecuting. “He was a competent, experienced cyclist.”

Drake, of Low Street, Carlton, Goole, was driving an articulated lorry on his second run of the day on the A1.

He was heading south and had just passed Blyth services. When he saw the cyclist he steered to his offside but collided with the bike.

He said there was no indication he was approaching a time trial but had since learned there was a sign 12 inches high from the ground where the race joined the A1.

The court heard Drake had been traumatised after the crash. He had a good driving record and had remained at the scene. But Judge James Sampson said the cyclist must have been visible for some distance. The sentence was 26 weeks’ suspended for a year, a two-year ban and £1,500 court costs.