Cranberries singer O'Riordan died by drowning

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Dolores O'RiordanImage source, AFP/Getty Images

The Cranberries front woman Dolores O'Riordan died by drowning due to alcohol intoxication, an inquest at Westminster Coroner's Court has heard.

The singer, who died suddenly on 15 January aged 46, was found submerged in the bath in her room at London's Park Lane Hilton hotel.

O'Riordan died as a result of a "tragic accident", the coroner said.

She had no injuries or evidence of self harm, and had drunk an excessive amount of alcohol, expert witnesses said.

She had been in the Park Lane Hilton hotel as part of a recording trip ahead of a 2018 tour.

Image source, Shutterstock

PC Natalie Smart, who attended the scene, told the inquest: "I saw Mrs O'Riordan submerged in the bath with her nose and mouth fully under the water."

The inquest heard that there were empty bottles in the room - five miniature bottles and a bottle of champagne - as well as containers of prescription drugs with a quantity of tablets in each container.

Toxicology tests showed only "therapeutic" amounts of medication in O'Riordan's blood, but showed up 330mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood - meaning she was more than four times over the 80mg legal limit for driving.

The inquest was attended by O'Riordan's mother, brother and sister-in-law. She split from her husband of 20 years, Don Burton, in 2014.

She and Burton, who is the former tour manager of Duran Duran, have three children together.

Image source, Island Records
Image caption,
The band's 2017 tour had to be cancelled due to O'Riordan's health issues

The inquest heard that the singer checked into the hotel on 14 January. She was in touch with room service at around midnight and phoned her mother at around 03:00 GMT.

She was later found unresponsive in the bathroom and confirmed dead at 09:16.

The inquest heard that O'Riordan had bipolar disorder but responded well to treatment.

The hearing was also told that she went through periods of abstention and periods of excessive drinking.

She had spoken to psychiatrist Dr Seamus O Ceallaigh on 9 January and was in "good spirits".

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The inquest coincided with the day that would have been O'Riordan's 47th birthday.

In a statement issued after the hearing, The Cranberries said: "Dolores will live on eternally in her music."

The band's statement in full:

On January 15th 2018 we lost our dear friend and band mate Dolores O'Riordan.

"Today we continue to struggle to come to terms with what happened.

"Our heartfelt condolences go out to Dolores' children and her family and our thoughts are with them today.

"Dolores will live on eternally in her music. To see how much of a positive impact she had on people's lives has been a source of great comfort to us.

"We'd like to say thank you to all of our fans for the outpouring of messages and their continued support during this very difficult time.

"We request, please, for our privacy to be respected at this time."

During the 90s, the Irish musician led the band to international success and their hit singles including Linger and Zombie.

The band embarked on a UK and European tour in 2017, but it had to be cancelled in May as a result of O'Riordan's health issues.

Image source, PA
Image caption,
Dolores O'Riordan performing on stage in 1994

The official Cranberries website cited "medical reasons associated with a back problem" that prevented O'Riordan from performing.

But just before Christmas, the singer had posted on Facebook saying she was "feeling good" and had done her "first bit of gigging in months", leading fans to believe she would soon be on tour again.

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