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Inquest unable to find what caused death crash of cousins Gary Ring and Brett Pearson on A20 at Bearsted

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Two teenage cousins died when the driver lost control of a car and it smashed into a lamppost.

But an inquest into the deaths of Gary Ring, 18, and passenger Brett Pearson, 19, was unable to determine why the vehicle careered off the road and ended up on its roof.

There had been rain and surface water as the car entered the 30mph zone along the A20 Ashford Road, Bearsted, at around 2.15am on Saturday, January 25.

Teenage driver Gary Ring died at the scene
Teenage driver Gary Ring died at the scene

Due to the damage to the Ford Ka, its speed could not be determined, although both front tyres had less than the minimum legal tread.

Mr Ring, a former New Line Learning Academy student, who died instantly from head injuries, was above the legal drink-drive limit and had some cocaine in his system.

He recorded 113mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood. The legal limit is 80mg.

Brett Pearson
Brett Pearson

Mr Pearson, a keen motorcyclist, was taken to King’s College Hospital in London with head and chest injuries but lost his fight for life two days later.

In a statement Nikita Hayward said she and some friends met the pair, who were in good spirits, at motorway services.

She said they had left to drive into Maidstone after them and then came across the crash scene.

PC Andrew Sutherland said there was no CCTV footage or witnesses and no road defects.

He said it was possible the car had aquaplaned or one tyre had slowed in the water, but he could not be certain.

However, the weather, lack of tyre tread and Mr Ring’s excess alcohol had all contributed to the loss of control, he said.

Mid Kent and Medway coroner Patricia Harding said: “Because of the paucity of the evidence I am unable to determine the exact cause of it other than the fact that there was a loss of control of the vehicle causing it to leave the road… It is possible that a combination of, or all of, the factors contributed to the collision.”

She recorded that both had died as a result of a road traffic collision.

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