THE teenage schoolboy who died on Wednesday night after being knocked off his bike in a collision with a car has been named as 14-year-old Connor Shields from the Ellon area of Aberdeenshire.
He died from multiple injuries after being flown by air ambulance to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.
Connor, who has been cycling with five friends when the accident happened on the A975 Newburgh to Cruden Bay road, was the third person to be killed on the roads of the North east of Scotland in three days.
The Aberdeenshire Division of Police Scotland are continuing their investigation into the cause of the latest roads tragedy in the area.
On Tuesday night 18 year-old motorcyclist Terry Crook, from the Torry area of Aberdeen, was killed when his motorbike was in collision with a car on Aberdeen’s Provost Rust Drive. And on Monday night Darren Lindsay, 23, from the Alford area, was killed in a two car crash on the A980 Alford to Lumphanan road near Muir of Fowlis.
The latest tragedy happened at 6pm on Wednesday night on the coast road between Newburgh and Cruden Bay road at its crossroads junction with the B9003 to the hamlet of Collieston.
Connor and five of his friends are understood to have spent the day at Collieston and were heading back towards the Ellon area when Connor was knocked off his bike near the crossroads with the main road by a northbound Volvo.
A Police Scotland spokesman said: “The collision involved a Volvo XC90 motor car, which was being driven north by a 59-year-old male, and a pedal cycle which was being ridden by a 14-year-old male. As a result of the collision, the 14-year-old male was airlifted to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary by air ambulance but sadly succumbed to multiple injuries. The driver of the car was uninjured.”
Inspector Ewan Innes from the Aberdeenshire and Moray Division Road Policing Unit said: “Our thoughts and condolences go out to the boy’s family and friends at this very distressing time. Our enquiries are at an early stage and at this time it is too early to speculate as to the cause of the collision.”
He explained: “The boy had been in a group of six of similar age.They weren’t an organised cycle group. They had been together and we believe they had been coming from the Collieston area , heading back towards the Ellon area.
“We had collision investigators deployed (at the scene) last night for about seven hours.
There were a number of witnesses to the collision. I would ask that anyone who may have witnessed the collision, or who has any information relating to this collision to get in touch with us.”
Connor’s parents were said to be too upset to comment on the loss of their son who was a pupil at Ellon Academy.
Tim McKay, the school’s Rector, said: “Connor was very popular pupil with a wide circle of friends. He was very bright and combined his academic studies with his love of sport, particularly rugby”
He added: “Connor was a kind and thoughtful young man who will be sorely missed by staff and pupils at the school. Our thoughts are very much with his parents, sister and other family members at this difficult time.”
Rob Merson, the local Ellon and District councillor said: “My heart-felt sympathy and condolences go to Connor’s family, for whom this will be a devastating shock. There can be no loss worse than the life of one so young, and we must wait for the outcome of the accident investigation to see what lessons might be learned from this tragic incident.”
There have now been a total of seven fatalities on the roads of the North east since the beginning of June.
Chief Inspector Ian Wallace, the head of roads policing for the area, said the death toll was “unusual” for the summer months when deaths and injuries on North east roads tended to decrease.
He said: “What we have noticed over the last few years is a reduction in fatalities and serious injuries during the summer months. We have tried to work out why that has happened - whether it is because the weather is better, people are away on holiday or is there some other reason and we have never really got to the bottom of it.
“But that trend unfortunately seems to have stopped this year.
Roads fundamentally should be safe but you just need to be reminded, despite the fact that there is glorious sunshine and it’s beautiful weather, that dangers still exist on the roads.”