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Accidental fall led to woman's death

Accidental fall led to woman's death

Sunday 15 July 2018

Accidental fall led to woman's death

Sunday 15 July 2018


A "very independent" 88-year-old woman who fell down some steps died as a result of that accident.

Josephine Le Pelley died on Monday 25 June, two days after suffering the accident at St John Residential Home, Saumarez Park, where she had lived since 2009.

Mrs Le Pelley had originally moved to the residential home with her late-husband Raymond, in 2009. She maintained her independence though with the Inquest hearing:

"Mrs Le Pelley was a very independent woman and did not need much assistance with her living arrangements. She was able to walk well, only needing the assistance of a walking frame at times and was able to move freely throughout the home."

The court heard she was classed as a "low risk resident in relation to the falls assessment."

About 15:00 on Saturday 23 June, Mrs Le Pelley was making her way down the steps at the front entrance of the Home, backwards. She was using her left hand to hold the railing and was carrying her walking frame in her right hand. She slipped at this time, falling backwards then hitting her head on the tarmac.

front door

Mrs Le Pelley's injuries were immediately obvious to a fellow resident who witnessed the fall, and a sister at the home was called and stayed with Mrs Le Pelley until the ambulance arrived to take her to the Princess Elizabeth Hospital.

Ambulance Guernsey

Pictured: File image 

Mrs Le Pelley's injuries were found to be severe, including extensive brain damage, a large base skull fracture and heavy bleeding. Local doctors consulted specialists in Southampton and it was agreed there was no surgical treatment option available. 

Mrs Le Pelley's family; including her two sons who were present at the Inquest on Friday 13 July, were kept informed throughout and doctors consulted them before moving her to Gifford Ward where she passed away on 25 June. 

The cause of Mrs Le Pelley's death has been determined to be due to a severe head injury and due to a fall from door steps on to tarmac. 

The Judge, Graeme McKerrell, considered a report from the Health and Safety Executive, which was not read to the court, before confirming a verdict of accidenal death and offering his condolences to Mrs Le Pelley's family.

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