Derriford Hospital car park man 'dead for two days'

Derriford Hospital The man, who had parked in a disabled bay, had recently attended an appointment at the hospital

A man who was found dead in his car at a Devon hospital is believed to have died two days earlier, police said.

The body of the man, 79, was found in his car by ambulance staff near the outpatient department of Derriford Hospital in Plymouth on Saturday.

It is believed he died on the Thursday in his parked vehicle. His death is not thought to be suspicious.

The trust said it was a "very sad" case but the man could not be seen by passers-by.

According to Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust, the man, who had recently attended an appointment at the hospital, was not visible to anyone walking past.

The car was in a disabled parking area and displaying a valid disabled badge, so it did not need to show a ticket as disabled users had unlimited parking time at the site.

It is not known when the man returned to his car.

'Very sad'

A trust spokesperson said: "The parking areas are regularly patrolled. It is not unusual for cars to remain in our car parks for a longer period of time, in an unplanned way.

"For example, a patient may attend an outpatient appointment and then be admitted as an inpatient or they may be given medication, which means they are not allowed to drive home and have to leave their vehicle in a car park."

When the man was discovered, the trust's emergency response team attended and subsequently paramedics and the police were called.

All CCTV footage has now been passed to the police.

Devon and Cornwall Police said a post-mortem examination was to be carried out to determine the cause of death, and that the man's family had been informed.

The hospital trust said that it was a "very sad matter" and expressed its sympathies to the man's family.

Car park operators Vinci Park said: "Our sympathies are with this gentleman's family, and we are doing everything we can to assist with the ongoing investigation."

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