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    INQUEST: CHERRY PICKER FOUND TO BE FAULTY

    Painter died from trauma caused by cherry picker overturn

    It has been reported by the Torquay Herald Express that an inquest has considered the death of a painter and decorator, 49-year-old Kenny Leach, who was crushed by a cherry picker outside a Dawlish convalescent home.

    The Inquest jury ruled that “a fault in the cherry picker was to blame” for the death which is still subject to investigation by HSE.

    Mr Kenny was part of a team, working for T J Smith. He was painting the exterior of the home when the cherry picker toppled and his colleague was thrown clear but he crouched down and became trapped.

    He died the following day after suffering a cardiac arrest in a hospital bathroom. The medical cause of death was recorded as an embolism on the lungs caused by trauma.

    Fault with the operating system

    HSE inspector Sue Adsett told the inquest it was “obvious” there was a fault with the operating system.

    “The machine came round more than the centre line. The arm shouldn’t go more than 184 degrees and it should automatically stop.

    The manoeuvring system has various controls and switches that should measure where it is, where it should be and when it should stop. From the photos, it appears this arm went further than it should have and not stopped.”

    The wife of Mr Kenny told the Express:

    “It’s closure. I didn’t know about the faulty switch. I knew it had toppled over, obviously, and I knew the alarm didn’t go off like it should have because my husband was alive for 24 hours and he was able to tell us, but I didn’t know there was a switch fault.”

    The inquest heard evidence from Darren Nash, HSE Specialist Mechanical Engineer for HSE, who said he found faults with the lorry’s electronic safety components – designed to stop the cherry picker from rotating more than 180 degrees.

    The family say they finally have closure after the inquest in Plymouth formally returned a narrative verdict.

     

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