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Friday 14 December 2018

Farmer (51) died after falling from trailer while baling silage

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An inquest into the death of a farmer has heard that he suffered a head injury after falling from a trailer.

Patrick Quinn of Castlelucas, Ballyglass, Claremorris passed away on June 30, 2018 after sustaining a head injury while baling silage on his rented land at Cloughnageeragh, Doonamona, Ballyglass, Claremorris.

The inquest heard that the 51-year-old man was being helped by Brian Flynn of Fallon Agri, Kevin Flaherty, a cousin of the deceased and Paul Quinn a brother of Mr Quinn’s. 

In a summary of the accident, Health and Safety Authority Inspector Brian McHugh detailed that on the morning of the accident Patrick Quinn had parked his tractor and bale trailer alongside the boundary hedge of the field.

Kevin Flaherty started to load bales onto the trailer with the bale handle attached to the back of his tractor. One bale had already been placed on the bale trailer when Paul Quinn arrived at the field.

After a second bale was placed on the trailer, Paul told Patrick that he had parked too close to the hedge and that if the trailer was further out it could be accessed easier.

Once Mr Flaherty’s tractor moved away, Paul Quinn got into the Case tractor and turned it on and moved it forward a short distance when he heard shouting and stopped the tractor.

Mr John Flaherty, a cousin of Paul and Patrick was passing the field at the time and went in and saw Patrick standing on the centre bar of the bale trailer, while his brother was driving the tractor slowly.

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He then saw Patrick fall from the trailer onto the ground and into the path of the left wheel of the bale trailer and he shouted to Paul, but it was too late. Neither Brian Flynn nor Kevin Flaherty witnessed the tractor and trailer being moved, or Patrick falling.

Consultant Pathologist Dr Fadel Bennani told the inquest that following a post mortem he found multiple abrasions and serious bleeding from the right ear of Mr Quinn, with an extensive fracture to the base of the skull which caused subarachnoid haemorrhage [bleeding on the surface of the brain].

Dr Bennani said a subarachnoid haemorrhage was usually fatal immediately. He told the inquest that the head injury was a result of the fall from the trailer and not the contact with the trailer wheel.

As Mr Paul Quinn could not attend the inquest due to bereavement, the inquest was adjourned to December 18 where a jury will hear his evidence and decide a verdict.

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