Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Chain left off trailer

Chain left off trailer.(News)


THE death of a mum who saved her daughters from a runaway trailer could have been avoided if bosses had maintained it properly, an inquest has heard.

Wendy Smith, 33, was killed by the 3.5 ton trailer after she had pushed her girls Nicola, 10, and Chelcie, four, to safety.

But Raymond Styles, who sold it to James Fletcher Ltd, said: "There was a safety chain is the only way of stopping a trailer if it becomes detached."

But the court heard the firm had relied on an unqualified marquee erector to maintain trailers.

Miss Smith was hit by the trailer that came loose from a lorry driven by John Armstrong in Halton Lea Gate, Northumberland. The Carlisle inquest continue

DINNER LADY HURT IN TRAILER HORROR; Gran left critically injured in accident outside school

DINNER LADY HURT IN TRAILER HORROR; Gran left critically injured in accident outside school.(News)


A COVENTRY grandmother is critically ill after being crushed by a trailer in a freak road accident.

Sylvia Norburn, aged 61, was walking to her job as a dinner lady when a four-wheel flatbed trailer broke loose from a passing van and crashed into her.

Mrs Norburn, of Monkswood Crescent, Wood End was pinned to the fence of Moat House Primary School, in Deedmore Road, Wood End, where she worked.

The accident happened at 12.20pm yesterday.

Mrs Norburn was taken to Walsgrave Hospital with a fractured skull and multiple broken bones. Last night she underwent a three-hour operation to stop internal bleeding and is still critically ill.

Colin Norburn, aged 63, her husband of 40 years, said: "I don't know what's going through my head, I just hope to God she pulls through it.

"I found out from my youngest daughter about 20 minutes after it happened. I only knew she was in an accident - I didn't know how bad it was."

Mr and Mrs Norburn's three daughters and four grandchildren gathered at her bedside last night.

Former colleague Simon Hancocks, aged 22, of Stratford Street, Stoke, was one of the first on the scene of the crash.

He said: "I was coming along the road on my bike when I heard all this screaming. I knew it was bad.

"I called an ambulance and ran down to the health centre to try and get a nurse or doctor. The air ambulance came out and the police shut off the road."

Moat House school's deputy head, Chris Davies, said everyone at the school was thinking of the popular dinner lady. Staff and pupils were shocked at the accident.

West Midlands Police are still investigating why the trailer broke loose and are appealing for anyone with information about the incident to call them on 0845 113 5000.


CRUSHED: Deedmore Road was closed after the accident which left Mrs Norburn (inset) seriously hurt

3 injured in trailer crash

3 injured in trailer crash.(News)

A WOMAN was seriously hurt after a trailer broke loose from a lorry yesterday and crashed into two cars.

Two other people received minor injuries when the trailer hit a Vauxhall Corsa and a Citroen Saxo on the A832 near Muir of Ord in Ross-shire.

Two women in the Corsa, and the male driver of the Saxo, were taken to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness where one of the women is in a "serious" condition.

The lorry driver escaped unhurt.

Biker injured in trailer accident

Biker injured in trailer accident.(News)

A MOTOR CYCLIST suffered two broken wrists and a broken knee after colliding with a trailer which came loose in Warwick, say police.

Warwickshire Police are appealing for witness to the accident which happened at noon on Monday in Myton Road near a humpback canal bridge.

A grey Toyota Hilux pick-up towing a trailer was travelling towards Warwick town.

Police say that, as it crossed the bridge, the trailer broke away from the van and crossed into the path of a black Honda CBR motorcycle travelling in the opposite direction.

The 34-year rider, from Stourport in Worcestershire, suffered a broken knee and two broken wrists plus cuts and bruises. He was treated at Warwick Hospital.

The 31-year-old man driving the pick-up van, from Warwick, was not injured.

Anyone with information is asked to call PC Pat Kearney on 01926 415000.

Trailer horror woman on mend.(News)

Trailer horror woman on mend.(News)

A WOMAN badly hurt when she was hit by a trailer that broke loose from a van is still in intensive care.

Sylvia Norburn, 61, of Monkswood Crescent, Henley Green, Coventry, remains in intensive care at Coventry and Warwickshire Hospital more than a month after the freak accident.

She was hit by the trailer as she walked along Deedmore Road in Wood End, Coventry towards the Moat House Primary School where she works as a dinner lady. The trailer pinned her to the school fence.

She is slowly recovering from her injuries which include wounds, fractures and a head injuries.

Pupils at the Moat House Primary School have been sending her cards.

Her husband Colin said: "She's better than she was. She can understand what is being said to her but she can't talk which is quite frustrating for her. She's always been an active woman and it's quite difficult for her to lie there doing nothing.

"She's had plenty of cards. She's had lots of cards from the kids at the school. I read them all out to her at the hospital. She can't have flowers while she is intensive care. She will be able to when she moves into a general ward but we don't know yet when that will be.

"It's going to be a long process but she is a very strong willed woman."

Mrs Norburn survived a heart attack nine years ago and overcame cancer last year.

Coventry Police are investigating the accident which took place on July 18.

GUILTY ..after circus trailer broke loose and hit a car, killing mum & daughter; OWNER CHANGES PLEA.(News)

GUILTY ..after circus trailer broke loose and hit a car, killing mum & daughter; OWNER CHANGES PLEA.(News)

Byline: By ANN HEALY

A CIRCUS boss admitted yesterday that a runaway trailer which killed a mother and her young daughter was faulty.

Joan and Siobhan Reilly died instantly after their car was hit by the trailer which broke free because of a faulty safety latch.

Stephen Courtney, 35, had denied charges of intentionally or recklessly attaching a trailer in a defective manner but changed his plea in Galway Circuit Criminal Court.

Courtney, from Earl Street in Longford town, pleaded guilty to reckless endangerment by allowing a trailer to be attached to a lorry in a deceptive manner and thereby causing a substantial risk of death.

The driver of the truck towing the trailer, Francisco Daria, 23, a Venezuelan national from Cherrywood Park, Dublin, also changed his plea to guilty on two dangerous driving charges.

The accident happened on April 6 last year on the N17 at Cloonacauneen, near Galway city.

One of the trailers became detached from another carrying two elephants.

It then plummeted down a hill before smashing straight into the victims' car.

Mrs Reilly, who was in her 50s, from Cloon, Claregalway, Co Galway, was taking 25-year-old Siobhan to work at 5.48am when the collision happened.

Lawyer Conor Fahy said the lorry cab with two trailers attached was dangerously defective.

He claimed that a safety pin or chain had not been fitted to the hitch of the second trailer to prevent the hitch pin from "hopping up".

The emergency braking system on the trailer was not connected either, he said.

Following the change of pleas, Judge Raymond Groarke discharged the jury and adjourned sentencing in the case to December 12.

He directed a victim impact report on the women's next of kin be prepared for that date.


COURT: Francisco Daria and Stephen Courtney in Galway yesterday