According to the report of Hampton police Detective Alexander Reno, Hess admitted she had “taken her eyes off the road for a few seconds.” Reno went on to write that weather conditions were clear, and it would have been reasonable for a driver to “have seen the bicyclist approaching northbound from a distance of several hundred feet.”
On Route 1A, the bridge connects Hampton Beach and Seabrook Beach. The two-lane bridge, which is about 300 yards long, arches over the tidal waters connecting Hampton Harbor to the ocean.
Less than eight hours before Saturday’s fatal accident, Hess was pulled over for speeding on the same bridge and told police she didn’t have a license. Hampton police confirmed that Hess, driving the same 2002 Honda Civic involved in the crash, was stopped on Ocean Boulevard at 12:45 a.m. Saturday after crossing the bridge at a high rate of speed. A Hampton police officer using a radar gun clocked Hess at 59 mph; the speed limit is 30 mph.
The Honda Civic is registered to 19-year-old Scott Martin of Nashua, N.H. As of yesterday, Martin has not been charged for allowing an unlicensed driver to operate his car.