Man gets suspended jail sentence after causing death of motorcyclist on Scarborough to Whitby road

A man has pleaded guilty to causing the death of a motorcyclist in a crash on the A171 between Scarborough and Whitby.

Tuesday, 13th April 2021, 9:48 am
Updated Tuesday, 13th April 2021, 9:50 am
York Crown Court

Joshua Langthorn, 28, of Kader Avenue, Middlesborough admitted death due to careless driving when he appeared at York Crown Court.

Motorcyclist Terence Adamson, 49 and also from Middlesbrough, died in the accident near the Helwath Road junction, which leads towards Harwood Dale, on April 19, 2019.

According to North Yorkshire Police, Langthorn was driving his white Volkswagen Golf towards Scarborough on the A171.

Mr Adamson was riding his Suzuki 650 in the same direction, travelling behind the Golf in a line of moving traffic.

As a clear stretch of road appeared in front of the vehicles, Mr Adamson manoeuvred his motorbike out into the empty carriageway to safely overtake Langthorn’s car, as well as a Land Rover Freelander which was travelling just ahead of the Golf.

However at the same time, Langthorn also pulled out to overtake the Freelander ahead of him, forcing Mr Adamson to take evasive action and steer his motorbike into the offside grass verge.

Mr Adamson initially struggled to control his bike on the uneven grass surface, but then managed to right the bike and started to re-join the road, just as an oncoming Iveco horsebox came into view.

Sadly, the motorbike and the horsebox collided head on, resulting in Mr Adamson being thrown from his bike and sustaining critical injuries.

The collision caused the horsebox to overturn, with the horse being ejected from the vehicle and dying at the roadside.

Mr Adamson was airlifted to James Cook Hospital and underwent emergency treatment but died from his injuries a few days later.

Appearing at York Crown Court on Friday, Lanthorn pleaded guilty to causing the death of Terence Adamson due to careless and inconsiderate driving and was handed a nine-month prison sentence, suspended for two years.

He was also disqualified from driving for two years and six months and was ordered to pay a £140 victim surcharge and carry out 150 hours of unpaid work.

Speaking after the sentencing, the officer in the case, Traffic Constable Matthew Tanfield, said: “My heart goes out to Mr Adamson’s family, who I know miss him dearly.

"He was a private man who valued family and working hard.

"This incident is an example of how a driver, by not paying full and close attention to the road, can cause an innocent person to pay the ultimate price.

"I urge everyone using the roads to always check their mirrors and blind spots before making any kind of manoeuvre.

"These are the very basics of safe driving and must always be adhered to.

"Motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable, so please always pay attention and be aware of those around you.”

Senior Investigating Officer, Sergeant Kirsten Aldridge from the force’s Major Collision Investigation Team, added: "As the lockdown restrictions start to ease and the summer approaches, more and more of us will start to take to the roads to regain our sense of freedom.

"But Mr Adamson’s tragic death acts as a stark reminder that we must always pay attention and drive safely, every time we get behind the wheel.

“The driver in this incident has pleaded guilty to causing Mr Adamson’s death and has received a suspended prison sentence.

"However, living with the knowledge that his oversight and error caused the death of another I’m sure is a very heavy burden for him to carry.

"So please, always check your mirrors and blind spots and be safe rather than sorry.

"I know Terence’s family echo this message and hope that all road users listen carefully to this advice, to prevent any more unnecessary deaths on our roads.”

Mr Adamson’s family also wanted to thank the kind passers-by who stopped and gave first aid to him.

They also wanted to thank North Yorkshire Police for the compassion and support that they provided to the family throughout the investigation.

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