No justice for Woolwich cyclist killed by hit-and-run lorry driver
- By London Cycling Campaign on at 12:00am 18 Mar 2011
- Posted in: Blog, Greenwich
- Tagged with: hgvs, No More Lethal Lorries, superhighway, woolwich
- Boroughs: Greenwich
Woolwich Coroner's Court heard that Adrianna Skryzypiec, 31, had been dragged by a lorry for 140 metres, but that no witnesses saw what happened.
The lorry driver who killed her did not stop.
The fatal crash took place in May 2009 at the junction of Woolwich Road and the motorway-style A102 link road from the Blackwall Tunnel.
Details of the coroner's verdict were reported on the road.cc:
The driver of the lorry which was believed to have killed her, John Lashbrook of Sittingbourne in Kent, said he was unaware of Adrianna’s death until six weeks after the incident.
When the coroner asked if he had a collision on the day of Adrianna's death, Lashbrook said: "No, I don't believe I did."
Lashbrook was initially charged with causing death by dangerous driving, but the case was dismissed before it reached trial.
A Crown Prosecution Service spokesperson told road.cc: "CPS London decided there was sufficient evidence and it was in the public interest to prosecute Mr Lashbrook for [causing] death by dangerous driving.
"Before the trial the defence team argued that Mr Lashbrook could not have seen the cyclist and was not aware of the accident until he was arrested.
"The trial judge accepted the defence submissions and ruled in their favour."
Adrianna's death was shocking to the whole cycling community, and the LCC local group, Greenwich Cyclists, put up a ghost bike in her memory.
Staff at the fashion retailers Net-A-Porter where Adrianna worked were particularly distressed by her death, and have supported LCC's campaign to make lorries in London less dangerous.
Charlie Lloyd, LCC's lorry campaigner, said: "We have already successfully campaigned to remove blind spots from the area around lorries.
"It's no longer acceptable for a driver to claim 'I didn't see her' as part of his defence."
LCC is concerned about the lack of provision for cyclists at major road junctions such as the one where Adrianna died.
This dangerous junction is on the proposed route of the new Cycle Superhighway 4, due to be launched in 2014.
There need to be immediate improvements to remove the risk of similar tragedies.