South West Wales

Swansea Walkabout death: Staff 'did not report lift issues'

Cyran Stewart Image copyright Family photo
Image caption Cyran Stewart died after being crushed by heavy bar furniture in the Walkabout's service lift

Staff at a Swansea bar where a worker died after getting trapped in a goods lift did not report issues with it before his death, an inquest has heard.

Cyran Stewart, 20, was moving furniture in the Walkabout bar when he became pinned against the side of the lift on 24 February 2014.

He died in Morriston Hospital four days later.

The inquest at Swansea Civic Centre heard staff who had previously got stuck in the lift had not reported it.

At the time, the Walkabout bar was owned by pub chain Intertain, though it has since been bought by another company.

Risk assessments

The inquest jury was told Intertain used health and safety consultants Perry Scott Nash (PSN) to carry out audits on its venues, provide training and investigate accidents or incidents.

Sandra Moore, then a service manager for PSN, said staff at the venue were able to access PSN Direct - an online service which allowed users to report any incidents which could then be investigated further.

Near misses, slips, trips or cuts were all expected to be reported, she said, adding that someone getting stuck or trapped in the lift would definitely count as an incident.

"There weren't any reported," she told the court.

Ms Moore said she and colleagues carried out an investigation after Mr Stewart's death and found training had been carried out and risk assessments were in order.

The inquest previously heard from former venue supervisors who told jurors they had each become trapped in the lift on separate occasions and had to alert managers to free them.

Image copyright Google

The inquest heard a safety mechanism could be overridden.

Glen Watts, who worked as a service engineer for Pickerings Lifts when Mr Stewart died, said he would service the lift once every six months and was called out to breakdowns with it "many times" or "once a month or maybe twice".

Asked if he was aware it was possible to override the safety mechanism on the internal door, Mr Watts said he "would not do it" as there was a chance of electrocution, adding he was not aware of anyone at the venue doing it.

Mr Watts said the lift was "very old" and "in need of modernisation".

The emergency services were called at about 03:20 GMT after a colleague heard screaming and realised Mr Stewart was trapped, pressed against the side by chairs.

Firefighters had to use mechanical jaws to prise the doors open but Mr Stewart had been trapped for 31 minutes by the time he was released.

The inquest continues.

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