Tragic death of cyclist
PUBLISHED: 10:20 15 May 2009 | UPDATED: 10:58 10 June 2010
Exmouth cyclist David Rendell's death was a 'tragic' accident, an inquest has heard. David, 23, of Cyprus Road, died in July 2008 after he lost control of his bicycle and fell into the path of an oncoming car travelling along the A379 Exminster to Dawlish road.
Exmouth cyclist David Rendell's death was a 'tragic' accident, an inquest has heard.David, 23, of Cyprus Road, died in July 2008 after he lost control of his bicycle and fell into the path of an oncoming car travelling along the A379 Exminster to Dawlish road.The inquest heard how Darts Farm administration officer David suffered multiple injuries as a result of the accident and was pronounced dead at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital after medics failed to find a pulse at the scene and artificial respiration was unable to revive him.Exeter and Greater Devon deputy coroner Darren Salter said car driver John Dart, 64, of Kingskerswell, and fellow cyclist Andrew Waite, of Exmouth, had been powerless to prevent the tragedy.Royal Marine hopeful David Rendell, who recently moved back to East Devon from Cambridge, had been cycling home after riding from Exmouth to Dawlish, via Mamhead, with members of Exmouth's Cycle Sport Dynamo Club.He and cyclist Andrew Waite had been part of a six-strong group of experienced cyclists, travelling at speeds of up to 25mph.David and Mr Waite were making the return journey back to Exmouth independently of the rest of the group after Mr Waite's wife telephoned to say a family lunch had been organised.David decided to make an early journey back to Exmouth with Mr Waite instead of waiting for the main party to return.Traffic on the main Dawlish to Exminster road was steady with vehicles travelling to a steam rally at Powderham.The inquest heard how David, riding at the rear of the pair, lost control of his new bike, clipped the tyre of lead cyclist Mr Waite, wobbled out of control, veered across the road into the path of cleaning company director Mr Dart's MG.Witnesses told how they recalled seeing David's handle bars turn to the left as the rider began to fall to the right. Mr Dart braked harshly and turned his car away in an attempt to avoid hitting David, who went underneath the car.Mr Dart's passenger John Keites, of Newton Abbot, told the inquest: "There was nothing John could have done to avoid the collision. It happened so close to us. He had no time to react."Cyclist Andrew Waite recalled looking over his shoulder and seeing David and his bike hit the road into the path of oncoming Mr Dart's car after feeling a knock against his rear wheel.He said: "I heard him say he clipped the bike on my wheel. I felt the cycle wheel hit the rear of my wheel. From the knock I knew there was going to be a collision. I thought 'oh my God he's going to come off'."Police vehicle examiner John Snow said David's bike tyres were incorrectly fitted, but had not contributed to the accident.MPC Philip Rowan-Smith said it was possible David had clipped the wheel while drafting on wind of passing vehicle - common practice among sport cyclists -- leaving little margin for error.Responding to a query about pedal cleats designed to hold cyclists' feet in place, made by David's mother Catherine Rendell, the officer said: "It's quite feasible he wasn't able to take his foot out of the pedal and he had gone down with his bike." Recording a verdict of accidental death, deputy coroner Darren Salter said: "It seems to me there may have been a momentary inattention that would lead to a tragic outcome. "It's a shocking thing to happen to someone who was so young. It does seem there was nothing Mr Dart could have done to avoid the accident and also Mr Waite on the lead bike."l Leave a tribute to David at www.exmouthjournal.co.uk
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