The driver of the car involved in a collision outside Tullamore that killed both him and three young brothers from Portarlington, had a blood alcohol level more than six times the legal limit.
Three brothers Darren Doyle (27), David Doyle (24) and Ryan Doyle (17) and their friend and driver Lee Bryan (24) were killed instantly when their Honda Civic crashed into a townlink bus on the Tullamore to Geashill road on the evening of Friday, August 10 2012.
At Monday’s (September 16) inquest, the pathologist in Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore Dr Margaret Lynch warned family members that the evidence was “quite upsetting”.
She described the crash injuries as being more akin to those expected in a plane crash and some of the most horrific she had ever seen.
Toxicology reports revealed that all four had alcohol in their systems at the time. Lee Bryan had a blood alcohol reading of 314mgs. The limit is 50 mgs.
However, there was no evidence given of the four men consuming alcohol before the crash. The inquest found all four men had died as a result of injuries consistent with a road traffic collision.
The men had been attending a soccer match in Tullamore. At around 5.10pm they decided to return to Portarlington, in Mr Bryan’s purple 97KE reg Honda Civic.
At the inquest, bus driver John Keyes recalled driving along the R420 Portarlington to Tullamore Road on the sunny day. He saw the oncoming car swerve over the white line before correcting and almost hitting a ditch.
As the car approached it again swerved in his direction and collided with the bus. “I did everything I could to avoid it,” he said.
Last year Garda Inspector Kieran Keyes who attended the scene described it as “the most horrendous crash scene I’ve ever witnessed during my 28 years with the force.”
“For everyone involved, the ambulance and fire service crews, the scene was very harrowing,” he said.
The Doyles had moved to Portarlington from Dublin in the past four years. Darren and David both had two children each, and Lee Bryan, a trainer with the local soccer club, had one daughter.