Flintshire man's body lay undiscovered after accident

Reporter:

David Humphreys

A man’s body lay undiscovered for more than 12 hours after his car came off the road.

Gerald George Jacob, 66, of Llanferres, near Mold, was said to be more than two-and-a-half times the drink-drive limit when he crashed his BMW car on the A494 near Loggerheads on March 4.

An inquest into his death was told how Mr Jacob, a retired welder and previously of Shotton, came off the road at 7.45pm on Saturday, March 4, but his body was not found in the grounds of the nearby Glan Yr Afon Hall until 11.45am the next day.

John Gittins, coroner for North Wales East and Central, recorded a conclusion that Mr Jacob’s death was caused by a road traffic collision with alcohol a significant factor in contributing to the death.

A statement from Mr Jacob’s partner, Maria Bevan, said
Mr Jacob had retired in December 2016 and previously drank heavily but the habit calmed when they got together.

It was said, however, that Mr Jacob had “blips” when he would drink heavily.

On March 4 the pair had plans and Ms Bevan said Mr Jacob had been in the shower at 5.20pm, coming out “grinning” and his face was bright red. It was evident that he had been drinking.

Ms Bevan said she would not go out with him when he had been drinking and shouted at him.

At 6.15pm Mr Jacob got in his car and drove off before coming back an hour later appearing to have more to drink.

Mr Jacob left the house in his car again, to Ms Bevan’s anger, who swore at him from the doorway and she told the inquest she had no idea where he was until being contacted by police.

Statements were heard from other motorists and nearby residents who said they heard a loud bang and saw lights in the woodland around the time
Mr Jacob’s car came off the road but could not ascertain their origin.

Philip Rogers, a handyman at Glan Yr Afon Hall, said he entered the grounds through the service entrance at 11.45am where at first he thought he had seen a golf buggy in the grounds but was Mr Jacob’s car.

A post-mortem examination by Dr Mark Atkinson at Wrexham Maelor Hospital determined
Mr Jacob would have “died on impact” and death would have been instantaneous.

A toxicology report found Mr Jacob had 195mg of alcohol in 100ml of blood, more than two and a half times the legal limit of 80mg.

A forensic collision investigation by North Wales Police found there were no defects with Mr Jacob’s car but there was no suggestion he had been wearing a seat belt at the time of the collision.

Ms Bevan told the hearing at Ruthin that the route from her home in Llanferres towards Mold was a road Mr Jacob “drove daily” and where he was found was “literally minutes” away.

Email:

david.humphreys@nwn.co.uk

See full story in the Free Press

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