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Thursday, 24 April 2014

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Pirelli death: Police appeal for workers and friends to help inquiry

The family of a man who died at Carlisle's Pirelli factory have said he had a 'heart of gold.'

George Falder photo
George Falder

The body of George Falder, a 48-year-old married father of two, was discovered just after 6pm on Sunday. Police are treating his death as suspicious.

In an emotional tribute issued this afternoon, his family said: "George was the kindest man you would ever know. He would do anything for anyone. He had a heart of gold and he will be missed so much by all of his family.

“George was happy spending time with his wife Andrea and two children, Emma and Simon and loved walking pet dog Bailey.

“George had just returned from his holiday in Turkey which he had been looking forward to since he booked it. We are all glad he got to go before this tragedy happened.”

The tyre factory, which employs 850 people, was closed yesterday while officers pursued their investigation. However, workers were told to report for work at 10am today.

Detective Chief Inspector Mike Forrester, who is leading the investigation, spoke to the News & Star today.

He revealed that a post mortem examination showed Mr Falder had not been assaulted before going into the machine - an industrial steamer used as part of the tyre making process - where his body was found.

The machine involved - where temperatures inside reach up to 150C and are said to be always in excess of 100C - has been tested and was “fit for purpose”.

Due to the extreme temperatures in the steam autoclave, Mr Falder, of Linden Terrace, Harraby, Carlisle, would have been "dead within seconds," he said.

Describing it as an "extremely unusual incident", DCI Forrester appealed for colleagues and friends to come forward to help police find out what happened.

Police are liaising with the Health and Safety Executive, whose own investigation is on hold while police pursue inquiries.

HSE spokeswoman Jill Inglis said: “We are aware of the incident. Police are leading the investigation at this stage. At some point in the near future we will know whether we are going to investigate.”

Neighbours in Harraby described Mr Falder, who had worked at Pirelli for almost eight years, as a quiet, family-orientated man.

He was a keen cricketer who played for Denton Holme Cricket Club since he was a teenager.

Former club chairman William Fulton said: “This is very sad to hear. He was a grand lad. I have happy memories of his exploits as a batsman.”

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