Huddersfield Daily Chronicle (15/Feb/1899) - Accident at Butterley Waterworks: Fatal Termination

The following is a transcription of a historic newspaper article and may contain occasional errors. If the article was published prior to 1 June 1957, then the text is likely in the Public Domain.



On Tuesday morning, Mr. J.E. Hill, deputy-coroner for the district, held an enquiry at the Railway Hotel, Marsden, into the circumstances surrounding the death of John Dyson (58), stone mason, Warehill Terrace, Marsden, which took place on the 10th inst, following an accident he met with on January 27th, at the waterworks of the Huddersfield Corporation at Butterley, where he was employed. Mr. W. Owen (of the Huddersfield Town Clerk's department), Mr. J.E. Hughes (manager of the Butterley Waterworks), Mr. F.C. Crowther (representing the engineer), attended the enquiry on behalf of the Corporation.

Mr. Owen expressed on behalf of the Corporation, and more especially the Waterworks Committee, sincere regret that the accident and death had occurred, and also expressed sympathy with the widow and family of the deceased.

Sarah Dyson, widow of the deceased, after giving evidence of identification, stated in reply to the Deputy-Coroner, that her husband was conscious for a long time after the day of the accident, but he did not tell her anything about it, beyond that his foot slipped and that there was no room for anything.

William Cowell, Springfield Terrace, Marsden, an engine driver, employed at the waterworks, deposed that the accident happened about 3:30 p.m. on the date named. Witness was managing a travelling crane under the direction of the deceased, and he had just let down a stone when deceased gave the signal "right." The engine was then brought back towards the yard, and deceased walked by the side of it. As he was doing so, witness saw him slip, and he immediately stopped the engine, and went to assist deceased as quickly as possible. Before the engine stopped it ran over deceased's right foot, crashing it badly. Deceased was unable to walk, and was conveyed home and attended by a doctor.

By a Juror (Mr. Harry Balmforth) — There was plenty of room for deceased between the engine and where he was standing just before the accident, and there was no fear therefore of an accident occurring. The ground was frosty, and that, witness thought, was the cause of deceased slipping.

John William Pogson, labourer, 43, Wood Top, Slaithwaite, explained that the deceased was proceeding round the travelling crane, in front, when he slipped, and the wheel caught his foot. The crane was proceeding at a very slow pace at the time. There was plenty of room to enable deceased to get past it.

By Mr. Owen — There was also plenty of room for deceased between where he had been working and the engine. If he had not slipped the accident to his foot would not have happened. The deceased was not running to pass in front of the crane, but walking.

By a Juror (Mr. H. Balmforth) — There was nothing in the way of the deceased to obstruct him and cause him to slip.

Elizabeth Balmforth, widow, New Inn, who laid out the body, said there were no marks upon it beyond the injuries to the foot. The heel was cut and mortification had set in, making the foot in a bad state.

The Coroner thought it was quite clear the occurrence was a pure accident.

A Juror — Is no doctor here ? The Deputy-Coroner — No.

Another Juror thought the affair was quite an accident, and that nobody was to blame so far as could be gathered from the evidence.

A verdict that deceased died from accidental injuries to the foot was returned.