Toddler, two, was killed after being struck by Land Rover that she walked in front after driver stopped to talk to her relatives in ‘tragic incident’ at farm, inquest hears
- Amelia Edwards died at Westermill Farm in Exford, near Minehead, Somerset
- Toddler suffered fatal head injuries when Land Rover collided with her last year
- The two-year-old tragically died at the scene, an inquest in Taunton heard today
A toddler suffered fatal head injuries when she was struck by a Land Rover in a ‘tragic incident’, an inquest heard today.
Two-year-old Amelia Edwards, had been with two family members at Westermill Farm in Exford, near Minehead, in Somerset, when the driver of the Land Rover Discovery stopped to speak with her relatives.
The infant had been walking in front of the Land Rover when the driver began to move forward and collided with her, an inquest at Old Municipal Buildings in Taunton heard.
Sergeant Joseph Sample, of Avon and Somerset Police, said the incident, which took place at 12.18pm on December 6 last year, was captured by a CCTV camera.
Amelia Edwards, two, suffered fatal head injuries when she was struck by a Land Rover at Westermill Farm in Exford, near Minehead, in Somerset, last year. Pictured: GV of Westermill Farm
Sgt Sample said: ‘A Land Rover Discovery was being driven within the grounds of the farm.
‘There was also a front-seat passenger. Amelia was with two other family members. The driver stopped his vehicle nearby to speak to them.
‘During this conversation, Amelia walked around the front of the Land Rover to the nearside of the vehicle.
‘She remained there before walking back the way she had come.
‘The driver began to move forward as Amelia walked across the front of his vehicle.
‘In my opinion, the vehicle never reached a speed greater than what I would describe as walking pace.
‘The Land Rover collided with Amelia and came to a stop a short distance away.
‘During this movement, Amelia sustained fatal injuries and tragically died at the scene.’
Sgt Sample said the entire incident, from when the driver initially stopped to talk to the family, took 30 seconds.
It took just two seconds for Amelia to walk from the nearside corner of the vehicle to where the impact happened.
The driver stopped the Land Rover four seconds after that.
Sgt Sample said the driver would not have been able to see Amelia at any time, and the parking sensors on the car would not have been activated.
‘The driver would not have received any visual or audible warning of Amelia being close to the Land Rover,’ he added.
The infant had been walking in front of the Land Rover when the driver began to move forward and collided with her, an inquest heard. (Stock image)
‘This tragic incident took place in a matter of seconds.
‘By the time the driver would have been aware that something had happened, it was already too late to avoid the outcome.’
Alcohol, drugs and mobile phone use were not factors in what happened, while no mechanical faults were found with the car, Sgt Sample added.
The names of the driver or the family members with Amelia were not given at the inquest.
During the hearing, it emerged that the Land Rover’s engine cut out automatically when stopped – known as a stop/start system.
Amelia may have believed the vehicle had been parked as its engine was not running and felt reassured to walk in front of it, the hearing was told.
Tony Williams, senior coroner for Somerset, reached a short narrative conclusion following the inquest.
‘On December 6, 2020, at Westermill Farm, Exford, Amelia Edwards was struck by a motor car which resulted in her sustaining fatal injuries,’ the coroner said.
Amelia’s parents attended the inquest, which took place at the Old Municipal Buildings in Taunton on Wednesday.
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