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Darlington woman died after being hit by motorcycle in Goa, inquest hears
A WOMAN died after she and her husband were knocked over by a suspected drink-driver while on holiday in the Indian state of Goa.
Pamela and John Higgins, of Darlington, were visiting the coastal resort of Candolim when they were hit from behind by a motorbike.
Both were taken to a local clinic, but Mrs Higgins, 54, was transferred to a main hospital and placed on life support. She died six days later.
An inquest into her death, at Crook Civic Centre, in County Durham, today (Wednesday, April 2) heard that the couple were coming to the end of a two-week holiday in Goa, which both had visited before and liked very much, when the incident happened on Thursday, February 27.
Coroner’s officer Dawn Bradshaw said they had been out for a meal and were walking along a footpath to their hotel when they were hit by the bike.
She said: “Unfortunately, John doesn’t remember anything about the incident.
"He remembers waking up on the ground with lots of people around him and Pamela lying on the ground a few yards away, not moving.”
Witnesses said a motorcycle was seen travelling on the wrong side of the road before the driver and a pillion passenger fell off and the vehicle crashed into the couple from behind.
Miss Bradshaw said: “The driver of the motorbike ran off, but was apprehended later by a taxi driver, the passenger was on the ground.
“John later discovered the driver was under the influence of alcohol and later bailed.”
Miss Bradshaw said Mr Higgins had been informed his wife had suffered a cardiac arrest on Wednesday, March 5, and died.
A post mortem examination showed the cause of her death to be head injuries.
She said: “The Foreign and Commonwealth Officer said it could take months or even years before we get anything from them and when speaking to the husband he hasn’t been updated by anyone about what was happening.”
Andrew Tweddle, senior coroner for County Durham and Darlington, said that Mr Higgins had asked for the inquest to be concluded as early as possible and a verdict of accidental death was recorded.
Mr Tweddle promised to keep Mr Higgins informed about what happens to the driver if and when his office is updated.
Reports in the Indian press suggest a 23-year-old man from the Calangute area of Goa was arrested and police investigations are ongoing.
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