Motorcyclist drowns in Fenland ditch just yards from his home, inquest hears

A MOTORCYCLIST “dry-drowned” when he was thrown from his bike into a water-filled Fenland ditch just yards from his home, an inquest heard.

Craig Coleman, 38, crashed into a concrete wall and fell 15 metres into the ditch at around 9pm on July 4, Wisbech Coroner’s Court heard. He was just half a mile from his home at Willow Farm, Whittlesey Road, March.

Police officers found the Whittlesey bike club member face down in the water at 11am the next morning, lying next to his Suzuki bike – a present from his partner Celine Stabler.

Mr Coleman, a store manager at Fengrain, had been to withdraw cash from a bank in March but on returning home he had failed to negotiate a tight left hand bend near Truman’s Farm, the court heard.

The father of three was still wearing his motorcycle helmet when he was found floating in the ditch.


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Dr Mike Harris, pathologist at Peterborough District Hospital, told the court that Mr Coleman had “dry-drowned” after a series of spasms in his throat.

“It’s a fatal tightening of the throat because of the cold water on it,” he said.

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Two large scuff marks were left on the road where Mr Coleman had braked suddenly and parts of the bike, which had broken off, were found nearby, the court heard.

Recording a verdict of accidental death, Coroner William Morris, said: “It’s clear that for some reason Craig Coleman did not negotiate properly the sharp bend and the motorcycle left the road. Sadly, Craig was drowned.”

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