David Holmes: YouTube video released highlighting dangers of driving and the importance of road safety

Video: A mother has decided to release devastating footage showing a motorbike crash that killed her son. Some readers may find the images distressing

Kiran Moodley
Friday 05 September 2014 15:58 BST
A mother has decided to release devastating footage showing a motorbike crash that killed her son.
A mother has decided to release devastating footage showing a motorbike crash that killed her son. (Norfolk Constabulary)

A mother in Norfolk has released footage of the moment her 38-year-old son was killed in a motorbike crash to remind motorists and cyclists alike of the dangers of driving.

The shocking and distressing footage was released by the Norfolk Constabulary on their YouTube page to ensure drivers of all vehicles thought seriously about road safety.

David Holmes was killed while riding his silver Yamaha on the A47 near Honingham, Norfolk on the evening of Saturday 8 June, 2013. He died after his bike collided with a Renault vehicle travelling in the opposite direction. Holmes had been riding motorbikes for 22 years.

While Holmes had been driving at 97mph, the driver of the Renault admitted to police that he had not seen the motorbike and was prosecuted in April this year.

Chief Inspector Chris Spinks, head of the Norfolk and Suffolk Roads Policing Unit, told The Ipswich Star: "The video is shocking; however this is the reality of fatal collisions. The emotions people may experience after seeing this video can only touch the surface of those feelings that families and friends go through when losing a loved one in this way.

"The consequences of fatal collisions are devastating for all involved and as such our message though education has to reflect this. I firmly believe this footage is powerful enough to make riders and drivers think about their behaviour on the road; and most important of all, change it for the better."

The video below, which viewers may find distressing, was captured on a headcam fitted to Holmes' helmet while he was riding. While the video shows the moment of the collision, it does not show any graphic images or scenes of the motorcyclist during or after the fatal incident.

Over a year since his tragic death, his mother decided to work with the Norfolk police to publicise the footage to send an important road safety message.

The video was produced by police with the full support of Holmes' family and features an interview with his mother, Brenda.

She described her son's passion for motorbikes and recalls his 16th birthday, when she and her husband bought him his first bike.

"It was a heap of a thing really but he was so excited and we brought it home on the back of his dad's truck," she said. "David was standing out on the parking space and he was jumping up and down with excitement. That was just fabulous. It was a lovely, lovely memory. I know Ken (the father) says he wishes he'd never bought him that first bike but I honestly wouldn't have denied David his 22 years of riding pleasure."

Brenda explains that her son had been with friends in King's Lynn on the day that he died. "I know he rode fast that day. He loved speed, he loved motorbikes," she said. "The driver didn't see him and turned right across his path. David didn't have time to take evasive action.

"This isn't an easy thing to do but I just hope somebody benefits from it that motorists...slow down. They look before they turn....They think as a motorcyclist, he's going fast, what might he do? Motorcyclists think, as a car driver, what might he do?"

Holmes' family hopes the hard-hitting and tragic footage will make motorists think about the other vehicles and drivers around them and ensure that deaths like David's are prevented.

Chief Inspector Spinks told The Ipswich Star: “The aim of releasing this footage is not to achieve agreement from the public; it’s about delivering messages around road safety and how deaths can be prevented. I welcome the fact it will create debate and, in my view, this will get people talking about road safety; their actions behind the wheel or on a bike and it will go some way to achieving our aims.”

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