Motorcyclist, 67, died during tour of Italy

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A biker died during the start of a 10-day holiday and just two days after celebrating his 67th birthday, when his motorcycle hit a car while overtaking.

James Cashman, better known as Jim, met his death while travelling with friends through Italy on September 15, an inquest heard on Thursday.

The group of bikers were planning to travel through Italy, Switzerland and Austria.

It is thought the radiologist, of Sarratt Road, Sarratt, failed to see an oncoming blue Renault Kangoo.

Herts coroner Edward Thomas said: “This was in the early part of the holiday – maybe even on the first day – because they had started off in Nice in France, which is just over the border.

“The police were able to speak to friends and one of them said that he was behind Jim, on his own bike. His friend tried to overtake, his speed being more or less 40km per hour, and he obviously hadn’t seen the other vehicle coming from the other side. Jim tried to brake but he couldn’t stop.

“He described it as an error of judgement to try and overtake without seeing all of the road. I think other friends confirmed that as well.”

Jim was given first aid at the scene where paramedics tried for 40 minutes to resuscitate him.

Mr Thomas recorded that Jim, who worked for West Herts NHS Trust, died from traumatic head injuries and said his death was an accident. The driver of the car was unhurt but the passenger suffered clavicle and sternum injuries.