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Inquest begins into coach crash

4th July 1975, Page 19
4th July 1975
Page 19
Page 19, 4th July 1975 — Inquest begins into coach crash
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THE MAIN CAUSE of loss of life in the Hebden Bridge coach disaster was the crushing of the victims between the seats, it was said by a pathologist at t h e Skipton inquest on Monday.

Dr Roger Pyrah, a consultant pathologist at the Airedale General Hospital, was giving evidence concerning the 32 people who died in the coach to the district coroner, Mr James Turnbull, The coroner said the jury would have evidence that a 45-seater Bedford/Duple coach belonging to Riley's Luxury Coaches of Thornaby crashed through Dibbles Bridge at the bottom of Finchale Hill falling some 16 to 17ft on to its roof.

Inspector Peter Wilkinson, of the North Yorkshire police, said that after the accident the seats in the interior of the coach were supporting the weight of the chassis.

In conjunction with a DoE vehicle examiner he carried out a preliminary investigation. The handbrake was found in a fully on position. The 'handbrake mechanism was intact. It was possible to freely rotate offside rear wheels. There an oil deposit on the inside the brake drum. The gear le was completely detached the gear mechanism was neutral.

A passenger, Miss Madele Pratt, giving evidence fronr wheelchair, said that when coach started going down hill it went faster and fas and the driver swore. He I both hands on the steer wheel.

Evidence was given that driver, Roger Marriott, one those who died, had had c siderable experience of di ing this type of vehicle.

The hearing continued.

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