Sheffield New Year’s Day crash victim made ‘misdirected decision’ to drive after drinking and taking drugs

A Sheffield man who died in a horrific New Year’s Day crash made the ‘misdirected decision’ to drive having taken cocaine and drank alcohol, an inquest heard.

By Sam Cooper
Wednesday, 10th July 2019, 6:59 pm

Greg Adams, aged 21, died after crashing his Saab 93 into metal railings on Southey Green Road, Southey, at around 4.10am on January 1.

Assistant Coroner David Urpeth recorded a conclusion that Mr Adams’ death was a result of a road traffic collision at Sheffield Coroner’s Court on Wednesday.

Mr Urpeth said: “It’s clear to me that Greg made the misdirected decision to drive his car when he was unfit to do so through alcohol and drugs.

Police officers at the scene of the collision on New Year's Day.

“This is another tragic example of the effects of drink and drugs when combined with driving.”

In a witness statement which was read to the court, Mr Adams’ partner Ashleigh Mason said they had been to Chapeltown Park on New Year’s Eve, together with her son Declan and had enjoyed a ‘really good day’.

They then went to a friend’s house and Mr Adams drank lager, vodka, whiskey and shots, she said.

Greg Adams. Picture: South Yorkshire Police.

Reading her statement Mr Urpeth said: “Greg had put his keys down on the side near where he was sitting. Later, Greg asked for his keys and I suggested he shouldn’t be given his keys as I didn’t want him to drive. I asked him three times.

“He went outside chatting to somebody and later I went outside but couldn’t see Greg. I then went to look for his car and the car was gone. I started ringing him but couldn’t get through.”

In her statement, Ms Mason said Mr Adam’s friend Liam Broomhead, who was a passenger in the car but not injured, had returned to the house and said there had been an ‘accident’ but did not want to return to the scene.

Floral tributes were left at the scene of the crash.

But she said Mr Broomhead did, together with herself and his girlfriend, adding: “There were so many police and ambulance it was obvious. Someone from the ambulance service told me that Greg had passed away.”

Mr Broomhead told the court he and Mr Adams had both smoked cannabis and taken cocaine before the crash.

Mr Upeth asked him if he recalled being concerned that he was getting in a car with someone who’d had ‘a lot’ to drink, to which he replied: “I’d been drinking myself. I didn’t know what I was doing – neither of us did.”

Running Mr Broomhead through his statement, Mr Urpeth said he described the car hitting a speed bump which caused it to swerve left and right.

The coroner said: “You say that all you remember is a flash and then you were stationary.”

He added: “You say you could smell that the air bags had gone off and Greg was slumped forward.”

“You shook himbut you thought he was dead at this point.”

A post-mortem examination found that Mr Adams died as a result of cranial trauma, with cocaine and alcohol intoxication being ‘contributing factors’.

In recording his conclusion, Mr Urpeth said: “This accident is a tragedy for Greg as well as all those he leaves behind so I would like to offer my condolences to you all and all those who can’t be here today.”

Cash was raised for animal charities and road safety charity Brake at Mr Adams’ funeral.