By Oliver Hall
A coroner has said drivers should be made to carry tyre pressure monitors after ruling a slow puncture was partly to blame for a crash which killed a young driver.
Jon Puddy died just two days after his 20th birthday in August after crashing into a taxi while driving at around twice the 30mph speed limit.
An inquest in Taunton heard last week that car fanatic and keen fisherman Mr Puddy was driving his younger brother Jacob from West Huntspill to Highbridge when the crash happened.
The inquest was told Mr Puddy overtook his friend Liam Knight as they approached Highbridge on Huntspill Road and narrowly avoided an oncoming police car on its way to an incident.
Mr Knight said Mr Puddy then started to pull away from him at speed before he heard a “massive crash”.
The taxi driver, Darren Haworth, told the inquest he saw Mr Puddy come head-on towards him on his side of the road.
Mr Haworth broke his knee in the collision but Mr Puddy died in hospital two days later from his injuries.
The inquest heard a crash investigation revealed road markings showed Mr Puddy would have been travelling between 50 and 67mph moments before the collision.
It also stated the pressure of Mr Puddy’s rear offside tyre was “significantly reduced”, despite being replaced a week before, because of a slow puncture which caused him to lose control.
In recording a verdict of accidental death, West Somerset Coroner Michael Rose said the “sad accident” highlighted the importance of regularly checking tyre pressures.
He said: “It should be compulsory to carry a pressure reader – tyres are the most important thing in a car.”