Death crash collision was a ‘tragic accident’

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A COLLISION that killed a pedestrian in Little Eaton was a “tragic accident”, an inquest has determined.

Dr Rob Hunter, the coroner for Derby and South Derbyshire, said Vicky Wall’s death arose from a complex set of circumstances that individually would probably not have led to the incident.

He said: “These events came together at a single point in time and created an environment for the collision to happen.”

Mrs Wall was walking to work at Little Eaton Primary School on Tuesday, January 11, when she was in collision with a car near the junction of Alfreton Road and The Town at 5.45am.

The driver of the car was Irina Kerov. She was on her way to work in Holbrook.

The inquest heard that Mrs Wall, of Croft End, Little Eaton, had opted not to use a pelican crossing that was only yards away to get across the road.

Dr Hunter said that Mrs Wall always went into the newsagents across the road to get chewing gum before work, and had probably taken the more direct route “hundreds of times” before.

He said: “Using the crossing would have been the best practice, but it was not the easiest means of getting where she wanted to go.

“It is not unusual not to use the crossing, given that she was familiar with the road and given the time of day it was.”

Dr Hunter also identified the dark morning and the near invisibility of pedestrians on the section of pavement from where Mrs Wall stepped into the road, and the fact that she was wearing dark clothing.

Pc Gary Wilson, of Derbyshire Police’s collision investigation unit, told the inquest: “It is clear that the view available is confused by the presence of the pelican crossing, other street furniture such as street lamps and signs, and a patch of dark fencing.”

The inquest heard Miss Kerov’s mobile phone and satellite navigation were not in use prior to the collision.

She was driving at the 30mph speed limit and had her headlights on. The lights at the crossing were green.

Miss Kerov, who is Estonian, also passed a DVLA-standard eye test in the days after the collision.

Dr Hunter said he was going to press for improved lighting on the pavement area where the collision happened.

He said if the pavement area was better lit it would give an extra “five or six seconds” of visibility of pedestrians for motorists.”

Dr Hunter gave the cause of death as significant head injury due to a road traffic collision and recorded a verdict of accidental death.