Report from day two of the TT inquest

Eyewitness reports paint harrowing picture of crash scene that resulted in three deaths and multiple serious casualties

The second day of the inquest into the deaths of a rider and two
spectators at the 26th Milestone during the Senior TT last year heard
evidence from TT marshal James McKay.

McKay said that racer Marc Ramsbotham’s bike disintegrated when it
hit the high embankment on top of which some marshals and spectators
were standing. Flying debris then scythed through the group. McKay
himself wasn’t touched but his girlfriend Janice Phillips was knocked
out and received an arm injury for which she later needed a bone
graft. Another female marshal, Hilary Musson, was so badly hurt that
she subsequently had to have a leg amputated.

Marshals tried to give resuscitation treatment to one of the
spectators, Dean Jacob, but the other, Australian Gregory Kenzig, was
too seriously hurt to be dealt with by first aid.

The racing wasn’t stopped, however, although the track was littered
with debris and oil. The AirMed helicopter could only land on the
other side of the course from the accident. Paramedics had to dodge
continuing race traffic as they stretchered the casualties away.

More controversially, McKay also apparently contradicted evidence
given at the previous day’s hearing by former clerk of the course
Neil Hanson and others, saying he had never seen any ‘prohibited
area’ signage at the scene in the several years he had been
marshalling there - challenging a revelation that the signs might
have been stolen as souvenirs. And McKay also said he didn’t actually
know it was a prohibited area, and thought it was a safe place from
which to spectate.

His remarks were corroborated by deputy sector marshal Philip Crowe,
who also said there had never been signs to indicate a prohibited
area on the top of the bank.

It also transpired that the marshals were aware of a risk assessment
carried out in 2004 that graded the area as ‘low risk’. The court
heard this had in fact been superseded by another document grading it
as ‘prohibited’ - but the marshals said that they hadn’t seen this
second assessment.