Home   Medway   News   Article

Fay Vercoe speaks at inquest into bike crash deaths

Three motorcylists who died in an horrific crash in Italy were riding on the wrong side of the road, an inquest heard.

But the survivor of the accident believes there were problems with the road and that it was badly signposted.

Fay Vercoe said her husband Mike and friend Colin Morrish must have been convinced the road in Trento was a dual carriageway. They had pulled out to overtake a car when a lorry travelling in the opposite direction hit their bikes head on.

Colin Morrish
Colin Morrish

Mr Morrish (left), of High Street, Rochester, Mr Vercoe, of Hever Avenue, West Kingsdown, and Wendy Pointer (pictured below with Mr Morrish), of John Street, Rochester, who was riding pillion with her partner Mr Morrish, died in the crash on September 22 last year.

Mrs Vercoe , who was riding pillion with her husband, was seriously injured.

Giving evidence at the inquest in Maidstone on Thursday she said the group, from the Motorcycle Touring Club Europe, had been riding for most of the day and were in no rush to get back to their hotel.

Mr Morrish, who was leading a group of motorcyclists, pulled into a lane on the opposite side of the road to overtake a car and Mr Vercoe had followed on his bike.

But as the two motorcycles made the manoeuvre a lorry travelling in the opposite direction came round a bend and hit the two motorcycles.

Mrs Vercoe said both riders were 'very careful, responsible drivers’ and added: “The way Mike pulled out was like he had every right to pull out into that lane. The way he was riding I am sure he thought he was riding dual carriageway.

“I know lots of people have said how badly signposted the road was and that it was very confusing and dangerous.

“Both Colin and Mike were very careful, responsible drivers, they did not take risks, particularly with pillion riders. They had ridden thousands of miles, something made them make that mistake.”

Coroner Roger Sykes recorded verdicts of accidental death. He said: “This was indeed a single carriageway. If the incident had happened in Kent I could submit a report to Kent Highways but clearly I have no authority so far as foreign jurisdiction is concerned.

Colin Morrish and Wendy Pointer
Colin Morrish and Wendy Pointer

“In this case there is no suggestion at all that the riding was reckless or dangerous.”

In a statement afterwards Mrs Vercoe said she was disappointed with the verdict.

“We feel very strongly that there were problems with the road and that they undoubtedly contributed to Mike’s accident

“The fact the road has not been found to be a cause does not tally with the widespread media coverage at the time of the crash that the road was dangerous; a view echoed by the local mayor

“If Mike and Colin made a mistake they were indeed on the wrong side of the road, something must have led both of them to make that same mistake

“I firmly believe they thought they were on a dual carriageway

“Mike was a hugely experienced biker, having covered thousands of miles across Europe and America he had been riding motorbikes since he was 16 never having owned a car.

“He was certainly not a 'born again biker’ as implied by some reports

“Mike and Colin were both responsible riders who would never knowingly or willingly pout the lives of their pillions or their bikes at risk

“My physical injuries are healing, now, but I remain desperately sad at the loss of Mike.”

For full story and interview with Mr Morrish's family see today's Medway Messenger.

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More