A dog walker was tragically killed by a tyre that flew off a trailer and smashed into his chest, an inquest has heard.

Peter Smith, 79, was hit by the loose wheel while walking with his pet next to a busy road near Newton Abbot, Devon, a coroner was told.

A Mitsubishi L200 was driving along the A38 towing a livestock trailer when it lost a wheel that slammed into the elderly man, The Mirror reports.

The widower was knocked unconscious and pronounced dead at the scene.

Coroner Andrew Cox gave a verdict of accidental death at his inquest in Plymouth on Wednesday (6 Oct).

During the hearing, he heard the wheel had not been serviced for more than four years prior to the tragic incident.

This prompted calls from the public to change the law, which does not currently require trailers of a certain size to be registered or have an MoT.

A member of Mr Smith's family said: "I want to change this law as it's not right.

"I don't want the same thing to happen to anybody else."

Mr Smith would always take his beloved German Shepherd on the same route where the horrific incident occurred, the inquest heard.

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A witness reportedly saw the dethatched tyre flying through the air at a high speed before smashing into Mr Smith's chest and knocking him unconscious.

A later post mortem confirmed the cause of death was chest injuries.

The safety report carried out on the trailer found that it hadn't been maintained since 2006.

Mr Smith's dog was also located at the scene and taken to be looked after by family.

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