Leeds & West Yorkshire

Woman 'impaled' by fallen tree pleaded for her life

Tree branch in front of Davison's car in Wakefield
Image caption Mrs Davison was fatally injured after a large branch smashed into the car windscreen

A man has recalled how his wife pleaded with him to save her life when she was impaled on a tree branch that had smashed through their car windscreen.

Elaine Davison, 55, from Pontefract, was fatally injured in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, in November 2010.

Edward Davison told an inquest the branch, which was about 4m (13ft) long, fell into the road in front of them during heavy gales.

He said his wife told him: "Don't let me die, will you?"

"I said 'no, I won't'. That's one of the hardest things.

"It's the first time I've ever had to lie to her and I can't take it back," he said.

More news from across Yorkshire

Mrs Davison was injured as the tree hit their Vauxhall Zafira on the A642 Aberford Road on 11 November.

'Blind panic'

A statement by Mr Davison was read out in court by Coroner David Hinchcliff which described the difficult driving conditions as the couple of 30 years returned from visiting their daughter in hospital.

It recounted how Mrs Davison "appeared nervous" before there was a "banging and crashing sound" as the branch fell.

Mr Davison said the windscreen collapsed inwards and he could see something "wood-like" pressing against his wife's stomach.

He went into a "blind panic" as his wife struggled for breath and she held onto the branch and implored him to "get it off".

Wakefield Coroner's Court heard he "frantically" broke off small branches to get to his wife before flagging down a passing ambulance.

Attempts were made to resuscitate Mrs Davison as she was taken to hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

A post-mortem examination found she died from injuries consistent with her abdominal wall being pierced.

The inquest was adjourned until Tuesday.

Related Topics

More on this story