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Commuters Save Life of Trapped Stephen Hubbard

Commuters Save Life of Trapped Stephen Hubbard

Norfolk Coroner’s Court heard the 62-year-old builder had failed to stop at the staggered junction of Holt Road and Shortthorn Road just before 6am on September 29.

The seven and a half tonne lorry travelling towards Horsford on Holt Road did not have time to avert the collision with Mr Hubbard’s Nissan Navara.

Royal Mail driver Antony Martin told the inquest he had lost his licence for two years in 1996 after suffering a blackout – a medical issue he had been living with since the age of 15. He said he “categorically” did not have a blackout on the day in question.

“Immediately on passing the Felthorpe junction I couldn’t believe what I was seeing,” he said. “The vehicle did not stop at the junction and shot out straight in front of me. I remember thinking, ‘I’m dead’ and slammed on the brakes.

“The noise was horrific and everything went pitch black. My recollection afterwards was really disjointed. I remember some of us trying to right the 4×4 but it kept sliding on the road surface.

“I have been having real trouble sleeping after the crash. While I know it wasn’t my fault I can’t help but feel guilty a man lost his life that day.”

Commuters James Kovacs and Wayne Aldred had also been approaching the junction and fought unsuccessfully to rescue Mr Hubbard from his truck, which had overturned.

Mr Aldred had been directly behind Mr Hubbard on Shortthorn Road. As the Nissan approached the junction he saw brake lights come on. “The vehicle slowed but did not stop,” he said. “There was a flash of light and an almighty crash. I was in total shock and couldn’t work out what was happening.”

Mr Aldred said he could feel a “faint pulse” but could see Mr Hubbard was badly injured. “I kept talking to him to reassure him help was on the way,” he said.

Collision investigator PC Forbes Scott said there had been no vehicle defects to contribute to the collision, but “it was impossible to know whether something could have been distracting” Mr Hubbard.

Area coroner Yvonne Blake recorded a conclusion Mr Hubbard died as a result of injuries sustained following a road traffic collision.

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