Chainsaw Death Accidental: Inquest

Chainsaw Accident

23.06.2008

A qualified tree-cutter bled to death while suspended from a tree after almost severing his head with a chainsaw, an inquest jury has heard.

Daniel Merrett's father, Ted, witnessed the tragic accident, which happened in the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire in July last year.

Daniel and his father ran a family business and were at client Robert Morgan's home in Lower Lydbrook when the 28-year-old was fatally injured, the jury at Shire Hall, Gloucester, heard.

A statement from Ted Merrett was read out at the inquest in which he said his son, from Broadwell, Gloucestershire, had cut trees in the Forest of Dean for 12 years. On the day of the accident, Daniel was suspended 24ft in mid-air as he cut the beech tree in Mr Morgan's back garden.

"I was waiting by my pick up truck for about 20 minutes and I heard a shout out to phone for an ambulance," he said. "As I looked up I could see him hanging in mid-air."

Mr Merrett said he ran to try to find assistance, but no one could help get his son down. Firefighters attended the scene, but Daniel was already dead.

The jury returned a verdict of accidental death.

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David Urpeth from law firm Irwin Mitchell said: "This was a tragic accident at work.

"Whilst the circumstances leading up to this accident is not known, generally employers have a duty to provide employees with a safe place and safe system of work.

"I represent many workers who have been injured or killed in serious work accidents."