A Norfolk van driver has been jailed for six years after he killed a cyclist while speeding through an accident blackspot. The BBC (link is external) reports that Sam McDonald already had 11 points on his licence for speeding when he hit Darren Orpwood while rushing to work in October 2016.
Orpwood was riding along the “Bawsey Bumps,” a series of three dips on the B1145 near King’s Lynn, at about 6.30am when he was hit by McDonald, who was driving a Ford Transit.
Prosecutor Karl Volz said Orpwood was flung 30m into a tree and that it took more than an hour to find his body in undergrowth.
McDonald said he at first did not realise he had hit the cyclist and that it was only when his van got a puncture three quarters of a mile later that he returned to the scene and called emergency services.
He was said to have been driving “in excess of 60mph” on the 50mph road in dark and damp conditions, reaching speeds of up to 82mph.
The court heard he had been late for work and three drivers on the same road described their shock when McDonald’s van overtook them in one go.
McDonald said his driving had been “usual” and that 80mph was acceptable, even in darkness, if the road was straight.
He admitted causing death by careless driving, but the plea was not accepted by prosecutors and the jury found him guilty of the more serious charge of causing death by dangerous driving.
As well as the prison sentence, McDonald was banned from driving for five years.