Oilseed causes freak motorbike crash near Morcott

The oilseed rape on the road that caused Philip Dent to crash his motorcycle
The oilseed rape on the road that caused Philip Dent to crash his motorcycle
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A motorcyclist avoided serious injury after his motorbike slid on an oilseed rape spillage.

Philip Dent skidded out of control on the B672 near Morcott at about 6.30pm on Wednesday.

Mr Dent, of Aldgate, Ketton, said: “While slowing down as I approached a junction, my motorbike simply disappeared from underneath me.

“My motorbike ended up in the hedge, with me not far behind it.”

Mr Dent was largely unharmed thanks to his helmet and protective clothing.

Not long after the accident, Victoria Fortnam, of Lawrence Close, Market Overton, was passing and saw Mr Dent standing in the middle of the road. She said: “I could see where Phil had come off because there was a tyre track through the oil. I saw the oil there, but if I had been driving I would not have noticed it.”

Mr Dent uses that road on the way to and from work each day and often sees trails of mud, dirt and oilseed rape on the roads. He believes farm vehicles caused the mess.

He said: “There are a lot of rapeseed farms around the Morcott area. I understand that farmers are harvesting and they have deadlines to meet, but they never clear up after themselves.”

Andrew Brown, who has been a farmer in the area for 30 years, said he has never heard of an incident like this happening before.

He said: “Farm vehicles are restricted to the same rules and regulations as normal traffic.

“Trailers should always be covered by a rollover sheet to stop anything falling off. If something is spilled, the driver should sweep it up.”

He thought that the spill was likely to have been oilseed rape, adding: “Rapeseeds are made up of 40% oil, so if they had been run over the road could become slippery.”

A spokesman for Leicestershire police said: “We understand that there was oil on the road, and that the motorcyclist was not injured.

“The Highways Agency has been informed of the incident.”

Mr Dent is appealing to farmers to clean up the roads after themselves, and advises motorcyclists to expect the unexpected when on small country roads.

He said: “Please ensure farmers tidy up behind yourselves. It costs someone else money and maybe could cost them their life.”