A CORONER has said he cannot be certain whether drink and drugs played a part in a man's death after he crashed his moped into a car.

John-Paul Buckland died from multiple unsustainable injuries, including significant bleeding from his chest when a major blood vessel to his heart was ruptured, after crashing his Honda moped into a Toyota Prius on December 16 last year.

A toxicology report found he was around 1.6 times over the drink drive limit and also had cannabis in his system.

He died in Royal Preston Hospital the following morning, December 17.

Lancashire Telegraph:

An inquest at Preston Coroner's Court heard that on that night, Mr Buckland, 31, of Hector Road in Darwen, had been leaving Feniscowles and was riding down Preston Old Road.

When he approached the Shell Garage, he overtook a Kia car and then made to overtake a car infront of that, a Toyota Prius, being driven by a Mr Bhoba, who was taking his friend, Mr Mitha to work at the petrol station.

However, as Mr Bhoba slowed down and indicated to turn right into the Shell Garage, Mr Buckland crashed into the side of the vehicle causing him to leave his bike, with his helmet also coming off. 

Giving evidence at the inquest, collision investigator PC Jason Colclough said: "From CCTV footage and Ring doorbell footage we can see that the brake lights from the car were on and also the right indicator light was visible.

"John-Paul initially overtook the vehicle following the Toyota and as the Toyota turned into the petrol station the bike struck the car and he came off the bike with his helmet flying across the pavement.

"Mr Bhoba was continually moving as he went to turn right as there was no traffic in the road at the time to force him to stop, and turns into the garage at about 10mph.

"From when John-Paul overtakes the Kia there is about a six second gap before he crashes into the Toyota which has enabled us to estimate he was travelling at around 48mph on a 30mph road, which was dry with the weather clear and visibility good."

Why do newspapers cover inquests and how do they work?

Senior Coroner, Dr James Adeley, asked PC Colclough if the amount of alcohol in Mr Buckland's system would have reduced his reaction time but PC Colclough said it would not have affected how much time he had to react, but would have affected how he reacted, especially when it came to his decision to overtake the Kia and then the Toyota. 

Giving evidence, Mr Bhoba said he had received a phone call from Mr Mitha asking if he would drive him to work at the petrol station, which he did, arriving at the Shell Garage on Preston Old Road at around 9.45pm.

Mr Bhoba said he checked in all of his mirrors before indicating and manoeuvering and could not see a moped, only the headlights from the Kia behind him.

He said: "I checked my mirrors and then turned right.

"As soon as I moved to the right I heard a noise that something had hit into my car.

"I stopped there and saw the motorbike was on the road."

PC Colclough said none of the vehicles had any defects and the road surfaces were fine at the time of the incident. 

Dr Catherine Roberts who was working in A&E that night said every attempt was made to resuscitate Mr Buckland, including giving him 26 units of blood to try and stem the bleeding from his major blood vessel, but he continued to bleed from his chest and a decision was made not to continue.

Dr Adeley said: "He sustained multiple injuries in the crash, and from the collision itself none of the vehicles involved contributed to the crash.

"John-Paul made a very bad decision to try and overtake the traffic which was slowing down to turn right. In some cases it wouldn't have made a difference but in this case it did. 

"The difficulty I have is that I do not know if John-Paul would drive like this having not consumed alcohol or cannabis or whether he would do so only after taking those substances. 

"I therefore have to say he died following a road traffic collision between a moped and a Toyota Prius, and I cannot say whether the alcohol or drugs played a part in this."

In a statement provided at the time of his death Mr Buckland’s parents said: “John-Paul was our precious son, and much-loved brother and uncle.

“He was a hard-working young man who was enjoying life. He loved riding his moped and it gave him his independence.

“He was a private chap who was looking forward to the Christmas festivities. He has been taken away from us and will be missed so much by us all.”