Man involved in fatal head-on crash with Saffron Walden motorcyclist denies dangerous driving charge

PUBLISHED: 12:40 09 May 2013

Derek Foster died in a motorcycle crash in Hempstead last year.

Derek Foster died in a motorcycle crash in Hempstead last year.

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A MOTORIST who was involved in a fatal head-on collision with a Saffron Walden motorcyclist has told a court that he didn’t think he was taking a risk when he pulled out to overtake another car.

Giving evidence on the second day of his trial at Ipswich Crown Court, Philip Graham said he hadn’t seen anything coming towards him when he pulled out to overtake and denied starting the manoeuvre before he reached the brow of a hill.

Graham, 30, denied he had been rushing to get to work on the morning in question and said he didn’t consider he was taking a risk by overtaking the car in front of him.

Graham, of Quendon Place, Haverhill, has denied causing the death of 37-year-old Derek Foster by dangerous driving on July 4 last year.

The court has heard that Mr Foster, a father-of-two from Saffron Walden, was riding his motorbike to work in Haverhill along the B1054 near Hempstead shortly after 7am when he was involved in a head on collision with a car driven by Graham.

Mr Foster died from multiple injuries, the court heard.

Peter Gair, prosecuting, told the court that Graham accepted he was driving carelessly on the day in question but disputed driving dangerously.

Mr Gair alleged that Graham had pulled out to overtake a car on the brow of a hill and had collided with Mr Foster. “The evidence would suggest that the defendant couldn’t see the road ahead clearly as it is a blind hill,” he said.

Giving evidence Graham, a recruitment consultant in London, said he hadn’t seen anything coming towards him when he pulled out to overtake.

“Literally as I pulled out I saw a light coming towards me. At that point I realised a vehicle was coming towards me. I applied the brakes as quickly as I could and tried to get out of the way. It was very quick and there wasn’t the time to move adequately to avoid a collision,” said Graham.

He said that since the collision he had felt “extreme remorse and regret” for what had happened and was distraught for what he had put Mr Foster’s family and friends through.

The jury retired to consider its verdict yesterday afternoon.

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