Fresh inspection of lift where child died in Galway

Thursday 06 February 2014 19.31
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HSA inspectors and a forensic engineer visited the site today
HSA inspectors and a forensic engineer visited the site today
Three-year-old Solomon Soremekun died in the lift shaft last month
Three-year-old Solomon Soremekun died in the lift shaft last month

A new inspection has been conducted on a lift in co Galway, where a three-year-old boy died last month.

Solomon Soremekun sustained fatal injuries when he became trapped in the lift shaft at the Hynes Building in Galway city centre on 13 January.

Inspectors from the Health and Safety Authority and a forensic engineer working on behalf of the boy's mother, Omolara Alabi, visited the building on St Augustine Street this afternoon.

Ms Alabi's solicitor Gerard O'Donnell said a number of tests and trial runs were carried out.

He said various scenarios were being examined to try to establish exactly what led to the boy's death.

The HSA inquiry into the death is ongoing and the three entry points to the lift have been sealed since the incident.

Mr O'Donnell said one possibility being examined was that pressure was put on the internal door of the lift after Solomon Soremekun entered it, causing the lift car to stop and the door to open between floors.

This may explain how he fell into the lift shaft.

Today's inspection comes after the HSA issued a safety alert on its website, following last month's fatal accident.

The Authority has identified a potential hazard that can arise if pressure is applied to doors when lifts are moving.

This can lead to doors opening, but they close again once they are not obstructed.

The HSA says if such an incident occurs, people in lifts should remain clear of the opening.

It has commenced an urgent inspection programme to ascertain the extent and nature of the passenger lifts involved.

The authority has appealed to anyone responsible for maintenance of lifts to check them and ensure safety standards are adhered to.