A RETIRED police officer died after cycling into the back of a stationary van on a Dudley dual carriageway, an inquest was told.

Martin Lewis, aged 62, of Mount Pleasant, Kingswinford, died on May 19 at Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital after suffering multiple serious injuries in the crash a week earlier on the A461 Duncan Edwards Way – Black Country Coroner’s Court was told this morning (Wednesday).

Mr Lewis had been travelling to work at around 8.45pm on May 12 along his regular route when he collided with the back of a stationary Mercedes sprinter van – Black Country coroner Zafar Siddique told the hearing.

He said Mr Lewis, who was married, suffered serious head and neck injuries in the crash, which happened between the Cinder Bank and Flood Street traffic islands, and he added: "He was taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and despite the medical treatment given his condition declined very rapidly and he passed away on May 19."

The coroner said the Mercedes van had broken down and the driver had managed to manoeuvre the vehicle as far to the left as possible and had switched the hazard warning lights on.

He told the court: "It would appear for reasons unknown Mr Lewis cycled into the back of the stationary van.

"The van driver described hearing a loud thud and getting out of his van to find Mr Lewis on the floor."

He said a police investigation into the crash had been carried out and there was no evidence the van driver had committed any offence.

He added: "The police conclusion was that Mr Lewis was a capable experienced cyclist.

“It appears he either misjudged or didn’t appreciate or give enough distance to get round the vehicle."

He said Mr Lewis died of multi organ failure due to spinal cord injury, due to multiple traumatic injuries, and he said: “Given all the circumstances my conclusion is one of road traffic collision.”