'I went over bump not knowing it was a body': witness

Daily Echo: CHARGED: Steven Petterson. CHARGED: Steven Petterson.

A DRIVER told a death crash trial how he went over a ‘bump’ on a major dual carriageway – not knowing it was a body.

Witness Robert Fairbairn was on his daily commute to work in Southampton when he saw a flash in front of him and felt his Mercedes coupe go over a bump.

Unbeknown to him, he had just driven over the body of cyclist and IT consultant David Irving, who died from severe injuries after being allegedly knocked off his bike by a minibus as he cycled to work on Mountbatten Way.

Giving evidence at Southampton Crown Court Robert Fairbairn recalled how he was driving at about 20-25mph in his Mercedes coupe on his way to work.

Conditions were dry and bright, and he had his visor down in Mountbatten Way because the sun was low.

He told the court how he suddenly saw a flash, adding. “I thought it was a Tesco carrier bag, the flash came straight at me. I thought it came from left to right but it was all in an instant.

“There was a flash and then a bump. I had gone over something in the road but I didn’t know what it was. I stopped my car, got out, grabbed my mobile phone and walked back.

“Then I realised there was somebody lying in the road and dialled 999.”

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Under cross examination from defence barrister Mark Florida James, he added: “I didn’t brake, I didn’t have time to react. I had not seen the cyclist although I was looking ahead of me paying attention.”

As reported by the Daily Echo yesterday, Mr Irving, from Wimborne, Dorset, died as he made his way into the city during rush hour on December 17, 2012.

The prosecution say Mr Irving was wearing an orange high-visibility jacket, an anklet with LED lights and had his lights on his bicycle at the time.

Van driver Lee Cooper, a medic with Solent Rescue, told the court how he was in the middle lane on Mountbatten Way when vehicles in front started “slamming on their brakes and swerving to the right from lane one.”

Mr Cooper, a lifeboatman for nine years, said: “I couldn’t initially see why but within seconds I noticed someone lying in the road. I pulled into lane one and positioned my van to stop others driving into him.”

He carried out first aid on Mr Irving, helped by a fireman and together they treated him until an ambulance arrived and paramedics took over.

Minibus driver Steven Petterson, 38, of Waterhouse Lane, Southamp-ton, denies causing death by careless driving.

Jurors have been told he thought he had hit a bus stop sign as he drove in bright conditions with the low sun causing a glare.

Proceeding.

Comments (9)

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11:49am Wed 22 Jan 14

Huey says...

"Jurors have been told he thought he had hit a bus stop sign as he drove in bright conditions with the low sun causing a glare."
So what he still should have stopped to see WHAT he hit...
"Jurors have been told he thought he had hit a bus stop sign as he drove in bright conditions with the low sun causing a glare." So what he still should have stopped to see WHAT he hit... Huey
  • Score: 5

6:26pm Wed 22 Jan 14

boxing_nut says...

If you read the article from Monday, Steve did stop to see what he had hit. Didn't think you could comment on an ongoing trail incase something is said that may influence the jurors.
If you read the article from Monday, Steve did stop to see what he had hit. Didn't think you could comment on an ongoing trail incase something is said that may influence the jurors. boxing_nut
  • Score: 7

8:26pm Wed 22 Jan 14

Torchie1 says...

Huey wrote:
"Jurors have been told he thought he had hit a bus stop sign as he drove in bright conditions with the low sun causing a glare."
So what he still should have stopped to see WHAT he hit...
Unlike the cyclist in Poole who knew that he'd ploughed in to a little girl while she crossed the road but he ran away and hid instead of stopping.
[quote][p][bold]Huey[/bold] wrote: "Jurors have been told he thought he had hit a bus stop sign as he drove in bright conditions with the low sun causing a glare." So what he still should have stopped to see WHAT he hit...[/p][/quote]Unlike the cyclist in Poole who knew that he'd ploughed in to a little girl while she crossed the road but he ran away and hid instead of stopping. Torchie1
  • Score: 0

1:07am Thu 23 Jan 14

Ginger_cyclist says...

Torchie1 wrote:
Huey wrote:
"Jurors have been told he thought he had hit a bus stop sign as he drove in bright conditions with the low sun causing a glare."
So what he still should have stopped to see WHAT he hit...
Unlike the cyclist in Poole who knew that he'd ploughed in to a little girl while she crossed the road but he ran away and hid instead of stopping.
Like the guy who hit and killed Jade Clark, ran, tried hiding the fact that he was banned, tried hiding the fact that he hit Jade by getting his car repaired, hid himself for a while before going home, pretending that nothing happened and still denying it till the end?
[quote][p][bold]Torchie1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Huey[/bold] wrote: "Jurors have been told he thought he had hit a bus stop sign as he drove in bright conditions with the low sun causing a glare." So what he still should have stopped to see WHAT he hit...[/p][/quote]Unlike the cyclist in Poole who knew that he'd ploughed in to a little girl while she crossed the road but he ran away and hid instead of stopping.[/p][/quote]Like the guy who hit and killed Jade Clark, ran, tried hiding the fact that he was banned, tried hiding the fact that he hit Jade by getting his car repaired, hid himself for a while before going home, pretending that nothing happened and still denying it till the end? Ginger_cyclist
  • Score: 1

11:26am Thu 23 Jan 14

pap says...

The trial is ongoing. I agree with boxing_nut; comments should not be enabled on this thread.
The trial is ongoing. I agree with boxing_nut; comments should not be enabled on this thread. pap
  • Score: 4

1:58pm Thu 23 Jan 14

Loumia says...

What has happened here could have happened to anyone driving in heavy traffic esp in a mini bus. Mountbatten Way is a dangerous place in the morning and not really a place for cyclists esp if visibility is limited. I really feel for Steve, he has not hid from the police and he has put his hand up to what has happened. It is terrible and very sad for both parties.
What has happened here could have happened to anyone driving in heavy traffic esp in a mini bus. Mountbatten Way is a dangerous place in the morning and not really a place for cyclists esp if visibility is limited. I really feel for Steve, he has not hid from the police and he has put his hand up to what has happened. It is terrible and very sad for both parties. Loumia
  • Score: 1

6:55am Fri 24 Jan 14

boxing_nut says...

Loumia wrote:
What has happened here could have happened to anyone driving in heavy traffic esp in a mini bus. Mountbatten Way is a dangerous place in the morning and not really a place for cyclists esp if visibility is limited. I really feel for Steve, he has not hid from the police and he has put his hand up to what has happened. It is terrible and very sad for both parties.
Yesterday's report shows anything but holding his hand up.
[quote][p][bold]Loumia[/bold] wrote: What has happened here could have happened to anyone driving in heavy traffic esp in a mini bus. Mountbatten Way is a dangerous place in the morning and not really a place for cyclists esp if visibility is limited. I really feel for Steve, he has not hid from the police and he has put his hand up to what has happened. It is terrible and very sad for both parties.[/p][/quote]Yesterday's report shows anything but holding his hand up. boxing_nut
  • Score: 0

11:55am Fri 24 Jan 14

Ginger_cyclist says...

Mark Florida James, for Petterson, suggested that the three lanes at Mountbatten Way are wide enough for cars to overtake without switching lanes.
That is wrong, you should NEVER try overtaking ANY vehicle in the same lane, this is WHY the minibus driver hit the cyclist, also, the cyclist apparently had a rucksack on over the hi-vis, meaning it would have probably been in DIRECT contras to the glare from the low sun and damp road surface meaning he would have been EASY to see, no matter what.
Mark Florida James, for Petterson, suggested that the three lanes at Mountbatten Way are wide enough for cars to overtake without switching lanes. That is wrong, you should NEVER try overtaking ANY vehicle in the same lane, this is WHY the minibus driver hit the cyclist, also, the cyclist apparently had a rucksack on over the hi-vis, meaning it would have probably been in DIRECT contras to the glare from the low sun and damp road surface meaning he would have been EASY to see, no matter what. Ginger_cyclist
  • Score: 1

10:20am Sat 25 Jan 14

Ginger_cyclist says...

Petterson said “I didn’t think I was driving carelessly,” he said. “I was driving like I normally drive. If I had seen someone on a bike I would have made sure I would have driven around them”

Pretty sure he did see the cyclist, or he would have rear ended them, not smashed them off their bike with a wing mirror, he also said he was blinded by the sun, if that's the case, then he should have slowed down for safety, this is why myself and many other cyclists get mad when people pass too close, because this can happen.
Petterson said “I didn’t think I was driving carelessly,” he said. “I was driving like I normally drive. If I had seen someone on a bike I would have made sure I would have driven around them” Pretty sure he did see the cyclist, or he would have rear ended them, not smashed them off their bike with a wing mirror, he also said he was blinded by the sun, if that's the case, then he should have slowed down for safety, this is why myself and many other cyclists get mad when people pass too close, because this can happen. Ginger_cyclist
  • Score: 0

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