Coroner's Court of Western Australia

Inquest into the Death of Elizabeth Francisca ALLEN

Inquest into the Death of Elizabeth Francisca ALLEN

Delivered on : 3 June 2016

Delivered at : Perth

Finding of : Coroner King

Recommendations : N/A

Orders/Rules : N/A

Suppression Order : N/A

Summary : The deceased died in the early hours of 17 November 2012 from injuries she sustained when a trailer carrying a boat ran over her on the side of Great Northern Highway in Muchea.

The deceased and her husband had a relationship which in the past had been volatile, often as a result of the deceased’s dependency on alcohol.

On 16 November 2012 the deceased and her husband travelled to Geraldton in a dual-cab utility to pick up a 23 foot boat and trailer. At about 9.30 pm that night they left Geraldton towing the boat and trailer. The deceased’s husband was driving. They stopped beside the road to eat some takeaway food which they had purchased from Dongara, and the deceased drank a small bottle of champagne. They continued their journey and the deceased fell asleep.

Shortly after 3.00 am on 17 November 2012, as they were approaching the intersection with Wandena Road, the deceased told her husband to stop quickly because she had to urinate. The deceased’s husband pulled over to the left and slowed down to stop on the bituminised verge. While they were still moving, the deceased opened the passenger door to get out.  There was a large truck coming up behind them at speed. The deceased’s husband grabbed her arm and told her to close the door.  She sat back in the vehicle. As the truck passed, the deceased’s husband noticed two bumps from the trailer. When he turned back to the deceased, she was not in her seat.

The deceased’s husband stopped and found the deceased lying on the bitumen a short distance behind the boat and trailer. He administered cardiopulmonary resuscitation until ambulance paramedics arrived, but the deceased could not be revived.

The Coroner was unable to determine precisely how the deceased came to be under the boat trailer. However, the Coroner was satisfied that the deceased impulsively got out of the utility while it was still moving slowly and stepped or fell back into the path of the approaching boat and trailer, which ran over her and caused her severe crush injuries which caused her death.

The Coroner found that death occurred by way of misadventure.

Catch Words : Towing and stopping safety : Alighting from a moving vehicle : Misadventure.

Last updated: 26-Feb-2024

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