Gloucestershire

Surround Festival worker 'died while erecting dome'

Surround Festival poster
Image caption The festival was cancelled following the death in August 2014

A man died when he was hit by the arm of a fork-lift truck as he was setting up a music festival, an inquest heard.

Lander de Meulenaere, 33, from Fishponds, Bristol, died in August 2014 while working on The Surround Festival at Sallywood Farm, near Stroud.

Gloucester Coroner's Court heard the vehicle he was using to lift a cover on to a geodesic dome toppled over, and he was hit by its telescopic arm.

The coroner recorded a verdict of accidental death.

Gloucester coroner Katy Skerrett said that although nobody witnessed the accident it was "more probable than not" that Mr de Meulenaere got out of the cab of the telehandler - a vehicle with forks on an extendable arm - for an unknown reason, before it toppled over.

'Misjudgement'

The inquest heard the machine had its boom extended, and was on a slight slope when it overbalanced.

It was still in gear and the handbrake was not on. One of its tyres was also at a significantly low pressure, which may have led to it becoming unstable.

The court heard Mr de Meulenaere was tired and under pressure to get the job finished, when the accident happened.

"It is more probable than not that it was a misjudgement on the day by a man working under pressure," Ms Skerrett said.

"It was an an error by Lander under tragic circumstances, resulting in fatal consequences."

The festival was cancelled following the death.

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