Young drivers urged to slow down

A coroner has appealed to young drivers to slow down, saying “a car is a dangerous weapon”.

South Kerry coroner Terence Casey was speaking in Killarney at the inquest into the deaths of two teenagers whose car hit bend in the road and left the N22 near Killarney at what the inquest was told was a speed of up to 170km/h.

The car with the two dead teenagers was only discovered at lunchtime on Saturday November 1, 2014, hours after it had hit a bend and left the road. It had ended up inside a ditch and was some metres below the road near the village of Glenflesk.

Anthony Battles, 17, of Hazlewood Drive, Ballyspillane, Killarney, and Dylan McCarthy of Cois Coille, Tralee, were found in the 2006 Toyota Avensis car.

The car remained concealed until spotted by a passing motorist.

There were no drugs or alcohol in their systems.

Garda forensic collision investigator Jim O’Brien said it was a bend of “medium severity” and could be described as “a curve” in the road.

The approach to the curve was at a minimum speed of 150km/h (the speed limit is 100km/h). However his examination of the collision with a tree suggested the speed was up to 170km/h.

The seatbelts had not been used, and the teenagers were found sitting on top of the closed seatbelts, Garda O’Brien said.

A autopsy found death was due to brain swelling as a result of a road traffic accident in the case of both men and Mr Battles had also suffered abdominal haemorrhage and a verdict in accordance with the medical evidence was returned.

Coroner Terence Casey urged young drivers to observe the speed limit and to “slow down”. “A car is a dangerous weapon,” he warned.

He sympathised with the families and friends of the deceased.

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