Nottingham

Woodborough girl Laura Morgan 'drowned under capsized yacht'

Laura Morgan
Image caption Laura drowned off Paleros in July 2003 after being trapped beneath an overturned catamaran

An 11-year-old girl was left trapped under water when a catamaran capsized, an inquest has been told.

Laura Morgan from Woodborough, Nottinghamshire, drowned in the accident in Paleros, Greece, in 2003.

Laura's mother, Lynne Morgan, told the Nottingham Council House her daughter was rushed to hospital by speed boat.

However, after being made to sit outside the hospital on a stone bench, Mrs Morgan said somebody came out to tell her Laura had drowned.

Earlier, the court heard from Molly McCullough, now 22, a girl who Laura had become friends with during the holiday.

Prison sentences

The pair had taken out the catamaran and decided to take trapeze harnesses, which allow someone to lean out to help steer the boat.

Ms McCullough then described how the catamaran was caught by the wind and turned over on its side.

She was not alarmed at first but then it completely capsized, describing it as "turning turtle".

Laura became trapped underneath when her trapeze harness was tangled in the rigging, the inquest heard.

Ms McCullough told the court a rescue boat arrived shortly afterwards and the crew battled in vain to rescue Laura.

Two employees of the UK-based operator Sunsail were convicted of causing death through negligence and given suspended prison sentences.

The inquest could only take place after legal proceedings in Greece had been completed.

The Nottingham Girls' High School pupil drowned on 31 July, 2003.

The inquest continues.

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