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Spectators died in 'restricted area'

An inquest at Douglas has heard how two TT spectators were standing in a restricted area when they were struck by a motorcycle which crashed at the 26th milestone on the final lap of last year's Senior race.

The spectators and the rider all died in the incident, but the Coroner, Michael Moyle, was told there were no signs to indicate it was a 'no go' area.

There was also confusion over who was responsible for such signs being in place.

The Clerk of the Course for last year's event, Neil Hanson, said a local firm, Kissack Brothers of Crosby, had the job of putting out the signs. Course maintenance officers from the then organisers of the event, the Manx Motorcycle Club, would check to see if any were missing, and the marshals were meant to tell Race Control if any more were needed. He said the issue was dealt with in a booklet called 'Marshaling Matters' and he had never been told of any problems.

A director of Kissack Brothers, Martin Edward Kissack, said the firm had been putting out the signs since the mid 1970s, but there had never been a written contract. There was a verbal agreement covering the Grandstand to the Gooseneck, and Kate's Cottage back to the Grandstand, but he thought the Department of Transport covered the Mountain section of the course, because it was government owned land.

His firm dealt with other safety items, such as bales and air barriers, and did put signs at three clearly specified locations, namely the Mountain Box, the Bungalow and Windy Corner.

The inquest was shown two videos of the fatal crash, one from the air, in slow motion and frame by frame. The rider Marc Ramsbotham from Norfolk, was seen to lose control when his head clipped a pole on the inside of a right hand bend. His machine went up a steep embankment and hit the spectators, 33 year-old Dean Jacob, of Kidderminster and 52 year-old Gregory Kenzig, from Australia.

The inquest continues.

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