Coroner calls for lessons to be learned after pedestrian killed on road near Wisbech

Mantas Nedveckas.

Mantas Nedveckas. - Credit: Archant

A coroner wants lessons to be learned after a 23-year-old man was knocked down and killed while walking home in the dark after consuming alcohol.

Mantas Nedveckas was struck by an Iveco van, near the Scarfield Lane junction on the Outwell Road/A1101 at Emneth, near Wisbech, just before 8pm on January 31. He was taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn where he died the following day.

An inquest heard yesterday that the factory worker, who had a four-month-old baby, had been wearing dark clothing, and may have stumbled onto the badly lit road after walking on a grass verge.

Norfolk coroner Jacqueline Lake said: “Lessons should be learned from this. Pedestrians should use the footpath to walk on, where one is available, wear high-visibility clothing, carry a torch, and not walk in the roadway after consuming any alcohol.”

She also suggested that drivers should have their lights on full beam, when no other vehicles were in sight, although, in this case, that would probably not have made a difference, she said.

The inquest heard that Stephen Roberts, an Asda delivery driver, was driving along the A1101 when his van struck the pedestrian.

Mr Roberts said he saw “something fall or run into the road from the nearside”. He heard a bang and rushed back to see what he had hit.

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He told the hearing he had not been able to work or drive since the accident, because his hands shook.

Mrs Lake said Mr Roberts did not have time to react and could not have avoided Mr Nedveckas, who was more than twice the drink-drive limit.

He had been walking to his home in Market Place, Wisbech, from Downham Market where he had met friends.

As reported, a campaign launched to return his body to his mother in Lithuania, raised the required amount, £4,060 in less than a week.

The inquest was held at King’s Lynn magistrates’ court. Mrs Lake’s conclusion was accidental death.