A JURY has ruled in a unanimous decision that the death of a man at a Carlisle business was accidental following a six day inquest at Cumbria House.

Brian Tuddenham, 57, of Brampton, died in an incident with a forklift truck at the International Rubber and Tyre Recycling (IRTR) Ltd in Carlisle on February 3, 2021.

Brian was a beloved family member and had been an HGV driver for more than 30 years.

The coroner’s court heard that a ruptured right internal iliac artery sustained during the incident was the cause of death and despite the forklift truck having a faulty handbrake it was not the cause of Mr Tuddenham’s death.

The jury ruled that the faulty handbrake of the forklift was not engaged at the time of the accident.

Earlier in the inquest, Frances Ellis, a Health and Safety Executive Inspector, said she found the steering and the foot brake were effective, but she had concerns about the park brake.

She said a test operator was able to drive through the park brake ‘quite easily’ while the vehicle was on ‘a bit of an incline’ and the brake ‘wasn’t holding the vehicle as well as she was expecting it to’.

Mr Tuddenham's employer IRTR have sent their ‘heartfelt condolences’ to his family.

A spokesperson for IRTR said: “Everyone at IRTR is devastated at the loss of Brian.  Not only was he a highly regarded employee but also a much-loved friend. 

“We send our heartfelt condolences to Lisa and her family.”

Dismissing the jury at the conclusion of the inquest, Cumbria's assistant coroner, Craig Smith, thanked them for ‘sacrificing’ their time and said that they had ‘acquitted’ themselves ‘excellently’.

The inquest ended with a personal thanks from the coroner to Brian’s family who have been present throughout the inquest.

“Thank you for being here and being with us,” said the coroner, Craig Smith.

“It is never easy when we lose a family member, and the inquest process only heightens the stress.

“During the past few days, you have demonstrated fortitude and resilience, and it has been a pleasure to meet you.

“I hope this gets closure for you and once again I express my condolences.”