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  • "My sincere condolences to Alex's family.
    One or two points not covered, research had shown that you are more likely to have an accident if you are wearing a helmet as drivers tend to drive closer to helmet wearers, possibly seeing them as less vulnerable than cyclists who are not wearing helmets.
    There are two reasons why Holland has such a good record for cyclist safety, firstly there are many more cyclists on their roads so drivers are much more bike-aware, and secondly, in Holland the law says that if a car hits a cyclist the car driver is always at fault, much the same as our law on rear end shunts.
    Many years ago I used to race cycles and we always wore helmets in high risk situations - such as on a banked hard track and in road races where many cyclists are jostling for position at high speeds. However, in normal situations such as training or time trials the vast majority preferred not to wear helmets for maximum cooling and maximum awareness, so the scrunch of polystyrene doesn't obscure the sound of a quiet car creeping up behind, mind you we were also experts at looking behind every two seconds. A good mirror helps too, both in daylight and at night, because if anyone is going to hit you it will probably be the car coming up behind."
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Father demands answers after son is found by road in Benfleet

First published in Local News by

A GRIEVING father says he still does not know how his son came to be fatally injured while riding his bike in Benfleet .

Alex Fryer, 22, suffered head and chest injuries in Essex Way.

His father, Steven Fryer, 46, of Waarem Avenue, Canvey , fears he will never know what happened.

He said: “It’s the not knowing that’s difficult. We have been treated appallingly by the police.”

Alex had been cycling in Rayleigh with a friend and was returning home alone at about 10.30am on Sunday, May 27.

He was found at the side of the road and was flown by air ambulance to Queen’s Hospital, Romford, where he died the next day.

His father says he cannot understand why it took until the following Wednesday for police to take photographs of the scene and why he had to keep asking them to put up witness appeal signs.

He called police on the Tuesday night to give them the phone number of a witness who had come forward and was told it was now an issue for the coroner.

Mr Fryer said: “There’s not a scratch on his bike, nothing.

“The police said to me there were no other vehicles involved, so I asked for his bike back, but they said no in case he had been hit by a car and they could check the paintwork. It doesn’t tie up.”

He said one witness had told police it appeared Alex had been hit by a car, but others had contradicted this.

The hardest part for Mr Fryer was no one took a statement from him at the time, so he had to go back more than a week later to identify Alex’s body.

Mr Fryer said a police officer had been to see him to apologise, but what he really wanted to know was how his son had died.

He said: “He was my son and my best friend. We did everything together.

“He had many, many friends.

“He was just a bubbly, outgoing boy, and he never had any enemies.”

Essex Police said they were still appealing for information.

A spokesman added: “We have taken receipt of a complaint from a family member in connection with this crash and it’s being looked into.”

Anyone with information should call the serious collision investigation unit on 101, or e-mail collision

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