'No investigation' into girl's death

Published Wednesday, 12 September 2012
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The family of a Co Tyrone girl who died after falling from a horse say they are angry that no investigation is being held into her death.

Hannah Wiley, from Artigarvan, was a keen horse rider and was killed during a show jumping event at Eglinton Equestrian Club in Co Londonderry last month.

The Health and Safety Executive was set to investigate the 13-year-old's death, but then indicated that Derry City Council would head up the investigation.

Three days after Hannah died, Derry City Council said in a statement: "As a statutory Health and Safety enforcement body, DCC Environmental Health Officers are currently working with relevant organisations to determine the circumstances of this incident."

However, the Wiley family said no one seems to be actively trying to find out why Hannah died.

"We were told initially that Derry City Council was investigating it, but they have now stopped their investigation," her mother Ethna told UTV.

"To the best of our knowledge [the council's investigation] was only carried out on the Saturday and then on the Monday, it was stopped."

The Eglinton venue, which has staged high-profile events, is well-known in show jumping circles and has had a good safety record. No one from the club was available to comment.

Hannah's dad Edmund Wiley was at the club when the accident took place, and he had to phone his wife to tell her what had happened. He said the family just wants answers, which they hope could prevent other riders from being injured.

"We're not looking to blame anybody ... It's not going to bring my daughter back, but it's just to have a safe place for other riders to take part in other events," Mr Wiley explained.

"We're not apportioning blame to anyone. We just want to make it a safer place for other riders so that some good will come from our daughter's death," Hannah's mother Ethna added.

Derry City Council has said the investigation is not its responsibility, as it does not regard the Eglinton Equestrian Club as a workplace.

© UTV News
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2 Comments
Joey in Dublin wrote (584 days ago):
:(
Alan in garvagh wrote (585 days ago):
very sad to hear about this tragic death but i dont understand why you need to have an investigation into a horse riding accident. Show jumping is a dangerous sport and although rare these accidents do happen. Who can people want to blame for an accident seems strange
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