Advising with empathy and experience

Tragic beach death.

A three-year-old girl thrown from an inflatable trampoline on a beach died from a head injury, a post-mortem examination has found.

Witnesses described how people tried to catch Ava-May Littleboy when the inflatable "exploded" on Gorleston beach, Norfolk, in the July 2018 heat wave.

Ava-May, who died in hospital, had been at the beach with members of her family who live in Suffolk.

Norfolk Police said a Home Office post-mortem examination found Ava-May had died of a head injury.

Zoe Dye, who was on the beach at the time with her daughter, said: "It was just screams from everyone on the beach. It was almost like slow motion. The poor little girl was in the air. No-one could do anything. People were trying their hardest to catch her and she just dropped."

Downing Street said the incident as a "terrible accident and a tragic loss of life.”

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) said it would be providing specialist assistance to an investigation being led by the police and Great Yarmouth Borough Council.

A Great Yarmouth couple in their 40s, arrested in connection with gross negligence manslaughter, have been released pending further police enquiries.

In 2016, a seven-year-old girl died when a bouncy castle broke free from its moorings in high winds in Harlow.

Former government minister and Conservative MP for Harlow, Robert Halfon,  has called for an urgent investigation into the regulation and inspection of bouncy castles and inflatables. He wants the government to issue a temporary ban on their use in public places until regulations can be updated.

He said: “The government should have a temporary ban on inflatables and bouncy castles in public places until all the regulations we know have been updated and we can ensure they are safe.

“There have been 20 injuries since 2011 and the tragic deaths of two beautiful little children. The time for just looking at it is over. There needs to be an urgent investigation into the regulation and inspection regimes. You cannot risk a tragedy like this happening again."

Supt Roger Wiltshire, of Norfolk Police, said it was too early to speculate whether the hot weather was the cause of the explosion.

 

 

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