A boy has died after a wall he was helping his father tear down at their home collapsed on top of him, according to an investigation. Scott-Swaley Stevens, aged 12, died at the scene in St John’s Road, Clacton-on-Sea, essexon October 21. His father, Scott Stevens, was released but suffered an arm injury.
Scott-Swaley’s mother, Charmaine Lee, ran to the fire station next door, yelling: “Help, my baby is trapped,” the hearing in Chelmsford was told on Wednesday.
Essex Chief Coroner Lincoln Brookes concluded that Scott-Swaley’s death was an “extraordinarily tragic accident”.
Stevens told police, in a statement read by the coroner: “The wall fell on us after we shook it down.
“I didn’t use any tools to complete this. It fell on us in seconds and I couldn’t stop it.”
Detective Inspector James Hardingham said firefighters called police at 6:56 pm and Scott-Swaley was pronounced dead at the scene.
He said that both the front and rear of the shed garage had already been removed, but one external wall was still standing.
Det Insp Hardingham said: “They shook the wall but unfortunately it swung back on them.”
He said Mrs Lee’s daughter raised the alarm, went inside and yelled at her mother: “Help, Mom, Dad and Swaley are trapped under the wall.”
DI Hardingham added: “They went to the fire station next door to try and get help.”
He said the family had “purchased the property to renovate and sell it for a profit.”
The coroner said the house was “under renovation and the family was largely staying in a caravan at the time.”
Brookes said, “They were doing it themselves.”
He continued: “After a dinner of fish and chips, Swaley and his father Scott apparently went out, and I found out they went out to try and finish the garage or at least to survey what would come next.”
Mr. Brookes recorded that Scott-Swaley died of compression asphyxiation after the wall collapsed on them.
Brookes said: “The weight of the wall was putting such pressure on his chest that his heart couldn’t function properly.
“His blood was unable to reach his brain, he became unconscious and died.”
He said it was an “extraordinarily tragic accident”, adding: “I was a 12-year-old boy with his whole life ahead of him.”