Traffic tragedies take their toll on the families of victims

Traffic tragedies take their toll on the families of victims

Janice Short

Max Fryman

First published in News
Last updated
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‘SHE was the centre of our world’. Those are the words of the heartbroken family of Janice Linda Short who died in a crash in Weymouth at the weekend.

Mrs Short, 63, was crossing the A354 Weymouth Way when she was in a collision with a motorcycle ridden by 23-year-old Max Fryman, who also died.

Mrs Short’s dog Toby also died.

The family of Mrs Short, known as Jan, have paid tribute to her as police continue to investigate the circumstances and make a renewed appeal for witnesses.

In a statement the family said: “Janice Linda Short, 63, passed away on Saturday July 26 after a fatal traffic accident in Weymouth whilst she was crossing a road with her dog Toby, who was also lost in the accident. Jan, originally from Leighton Buzzard, moved to Weymouth with her husband Andrew to be closer to their family, after retiring as a teaching assistant 12 months ago.

“Jan and Andrew would have celebrated their 43rd wedding anniversary in September.

“Jan was mum to three children, Adam, Emma and Caroline, and Nanna to her six adored grandchildren, whom she loved more than we can find words to express at this time.”

Mrs Short’s husband Andrew said: “Jan was the centre of our world and in a split second, tragically taken from us all.

“The love that her young grandchildren will now miss out on is a void we can only hope to fill by finding the strength to pull together as a family.

“Her wonderful spirit, love and enthusiasm will be missed every day by everyone who was fortunate enough to know her.”

The collision happened shortly after 5pm at the crossing point on Weymouth Way which links the pathway to Goldcroft Avenue and Radipole Lake. It involved a bronze coloured Honda motorcycle.

PC Andy Loveless, of Dorset Police’s Traffic Unit, said: “Early indications are that the motorcyclist was travelling north, from the Swannery bridge location toward Chafeys roundabout, and the female pedestrian walked out to cross the road into the path of the motorcycle. The motorcyclist, the pedestrian and the dog all sadly died as a result of the injuries they received.”

PC Loveless added: “The road was closed for several hours while police collision investigators carried out a thorough examination at the scene and the public are thanked for their patience while this time consuming but essential process took place.”

Witnesses and anyone with information should call Dorset Police in confidence on 101 quoting incident number 26:395.

Tributes pour in for motorcyclist Max

HUNDREDS of tributes have been pouring in following the death of motorcyclist Max Fryman – and his family have thanked well-wishers for the support.

Mr Fryman, right, was the 23-year-old motorcyclist who died in the collision.

Hundreds of Max’s friends took to social media to post their own tributes to him.

Max’s dad Bill Fryman said: “I and the whole family are genuinely touched and happy about the comments that have been left about Max.

“It makes us happy that he made a lot of other people happy and that he meant a lot to people.

“He was truly a smashing lad and we will all miss him.”

A group of Max’s close friends gathered at the Lazy Lizard bar on Sunday night for a commemorative drink in his honour, with all of those in attendance having a pint of Guinness, Max’s favourite drink.

Nadine Simpson, manager of the Lazy Lizard, paid tribute to Mr Fryman and said he was the sort of person that “made it nice to go to work.”

She said: “He was quite a regular in the bar. He was always as good as gold, really lovely, he was never any trouble.

“He was a genuinely nice guy, always polite and got on with all the other staff. He will definitely be missed by everyone, he was one of those nice people that made it nice to go to work.

“We were all really shocked and sad to hear of it and everyone’s thoughts from the Lazy Lizard are with his friends and family at this terrible time.”

Many of Max’s friends took to Facebook to post their touching messages of condolences on his profile page to their “one of a kind” and “genuinely lovely” friend.

Kayla Johnson said: “Rest in Peace Max. I can’t believe it, taken too soon. Such a genuine lad. Another star shining bright in the skies.

“Sending all my thoughts to your family.”

Jake Butcher said: “Rest in Peace Max.

“You was one of a kind mate, and everyone will miss you. My thoughts are with your family.”

Calls to make road crossing safer

URGENT calls are being made for authorities to make a crossing safer on one of Weymouth’s busiest roads after two tragic accidents which have claimed the lives of three people.

In the latest incident on Saturday, motorcyclist Max Fryman and pedestrian Janice Short died in a collision.

It happened at the spot where five-year-old Lily-Mae Jeffries was killed in 2012.

Crossing improvements were made on Weymouth Way, which has a 50mph speed limit, after Lily-Mae’s death but locals say they did not go far enough.

One resident, who wrote to Dorset County Council about the potential hazard last year, has called for the crossing points to be closed off until they are made safer.

In his letter to the council, Pete Smith described the crossings as ‘inadequate’, saying: “Let us hope they don’t end up as front page headlines in the Dorset Echo as they are offering no real protection to pedestrians and have lighting which is insufficient to draw drivers’ attention to them during the hours of darkness.”

Following Saturday’s tragedy, he said: “The crossings are not fit for purpose and there is insufficient signage to warn drivers that people are crossing.

“They should be closed off until a safe and satisfactory solution is found.

“Traffic lights should be put there or the speed limit reduced.”

Safety measures are being backed by Weymouth and Portland councillor Ryan Hope who wants to see the speed limit reduced to 30mph.

He criticised Dorset County Council for failing to maintain the grass along Weymouth Way, suggesting that it reduced visibility.

He said: “It’s probably about four foot to five foot high there in growth. This would stop vision around the bend from that crossing.”

Residents remain divided over the best way to make the crossing areas safer, with suggestions that an underpass or overpass should be built. Cllr Hope said these ideas had been explored last year, but ruled out.

Meanwhile, residents in Goldcroft Avenue say they would like the access route to remain open but with safeguards in place.

Grace Barclay, 83, said: “It’s not a safe road. I used to have a dog and go across their daily for about 10 to 15 years. It’s dangerous because there’s a bend further down. “I wouldn’t like to see that shut off. I would assume an underground path would be the best bet.”

Geoffrey Carey, 69, regularly uses the crossing with his wife Maria, 63, for work and leisure purposes.

Mr Carey said: “It’s clearly not a safe road. Pedestrians have been killed, whereas others have been injured and there have been numerous near misses. It’s our only access route to the other side of the road. The most practical thing that would happen in the short term is a 30mph speed limit.”

Cllr Mike Byatt, who chairs the borough’s management committee, said: “We have to examine what the causes were. We have to have an open mind about what the best solutions are.”

DORSET County Council is considering a plan to reduce the part of the road’s speed limit to 40mph.

Andrew Martin, Dorset County Council’s head of highways, said: “We are currently in the first stages of consultation with local councillors and Dorset Police about the speed limit on a stretch of the A354 Weymouth Way.”

Mr Martin was unable to confirm which stretch of the road was being considered. Dorset County Council is responsible for grass cutting along highways and public footpaths.

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council carries out the highway verge maintenance work on the county council’s behalf.

Highway verges are cut to the standard of up to 11 cuts a year.

A spokeswoman for Dorset County Council said they would wait for the results of the police investigation before commenting on the issue.

Town centre crash victim dies in hospital

A WOMAN who was seriously injured after her car collided with a post in Weymouth town centre almost two weeks ago has died, police said.

She was airlifted to Southampton Hospital following the crash in Commercial Road on July 16.

The woman’s car, a Rover, hit a post along Commercial Road at 10.30am near the Harbourside car park. She suffered life-threatening injuries.

Dorset Police said the 67-year-old woman, from Weymouth, died in hospital on Sunday as a result of her injuries.

Police are appealing for witnesses to the collision.

Information to PC Gareth Blaken of the Weymouth traffic unit on 101 quoting incident 16-131.

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