North West Wales

Ex-policeman death's Barbados beach warning

A coroner is to write to authorities in Barbados to highlight concerns over beach safety following the death of a former North Wales Police sergeant.

Aled Roberts, 56, from Penmaenmawr, Conwy, died in February 2013 when he was caught by strong currents off the Silver Sands beach on the island.

An inquest at Llandudno on Tuesday recorded a verdict of accidental death.

The hearing was told there were no warnings on the beach about the danger of currents in the sea.

North Wales deputy coroner Nicola Jones said had the tragedy happened in this country, she would have written to authorities in a bid to prevent similar deaths in the future.

She said in this case, she would send a letter to the coroner in Barbados, along with a copy of the case file.

The former officer had been celebrating the birthday of a colleague with his wife and a party of six other tourists when he died.

Det Sgt Robert Halford, who was with the party, told the inquest that Mr Roberts got into difficulties because of the swell in the water and the strength of currents.

'Frantic' efforts

He said there had been "frantic" efforts to save his colleague.

The coroner asked :"If there had been warning signs, warning you and friends there was a strong current and big swell and potential danger, would you have gone swimming?"

"Absolutely not," replied Det Sgt Halford.

Following the inquest, North Wales Police paid tribute to Mr Roberts.

"Aled was a valued member of North Wales police having worked in the organisation for many years as a sergeant and most recently as a property clerk," said Supt Steve Williams.

"His tragic death leaves a sad void in the workplace and he is greatly missed."

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