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Lanner driver Ashley Campbell was over legal alcohol limit when he died

By WBJLock  |  Posted: February 26, 2014

  • Ashley Campbell.

  • Flowers left at the scene of the crash.

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A “MUCH-LOVED” young man was not wearing a seat-belt and was over the legal alcohol limit when he died after crashing into a wall, an inquest heard.

Ashley Campbell, 24, was killed on the A393 in Lanner on May 15 last year at about 10.15pm. His ribs and skull were fractured in the collision.

An inquest on Monday in Truro heard how Ashley’s blood alcohol level was at 108 milligrams, above the legal limit of 80 milligrams.

Mark Richards, forensic vehicle examiner, told the hearing that modifications made to Ashley’s Honda Civic may have made the car difficult to control at speed.

He said: “The vehicle had been lowered and the tread of the near-side front tyre was below the legal limit.

“Looking at the seat belt there was no friction burns on it which suggests it was not worn at the time. Otherwise it would have been pulled through the buckle causing fraying.

“None of this could cause the vehicle to crash in the way it did though.”

Mr Richards said the alcohol in Ashley’s system would have played a part in the crash.

PC Mike Lackey, a collision investigator based in Bodmin, gathered physical evidence at the scene.

He said: “The weather was clear but the road was wet.

“Ashley’s Honda Civic collided with a wall. There were no witnesses to the incident but one person reported seeing the car travelling at speed, but not excessive.

“There is no evidence of anything else involved with the crash.

“The amount of alcohol in Ashley’s system is known to affect and slow drivers’ reactions and inhibitions.

“He attempted to manoeuvre through a chicane before crashing into a wall, driving too fast for that part of the road and with alcohol in his system.”

PC Lackey said even if Ashley had been wearing his seatbelt it is unlikely the outcome would have been different given the impact of the crash.

Deputy coroner for Cornwall Barrie van den Berg said Ashley had left behind a bereaved family.

Devastated friends and family left dozens of bouquets of flowers at the scene and set up a tribute Facebook site.

Ashley went to Lanner School, Redruth School and Cornwall College, where he trained to be a chef, working at the Coppice Inn in the village.

Mr van den Berg recorded the cause of death as fractures to the skull and ribs and alcohol consumption. He closed the inquest with a verdict that Ashley’s death was as a result of road traffic collision.

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