A CORONER has urged an NHS trust to learn from its mistakes after medics sent a lorry driver home with six broken ribs.
John Hind, 62, of Gilling Crescent, Darlington, County Durham, was injured at Shotton Surface Mine, in Cramlington, Northumberland.
As he loosened a tarpaulin cover on the rear of his lorry on September 12, 2011, a strong wind dragged it into the air pulling Mr Hind against his wagon.
Coroner Andrew Tweddle heard today (Wednesday, February 13) in Crook that wind speeds on the site that day averaged 40mph. Mr Hind, who worked for Roadstone Aggregates, Richmond, North Yorkshire, suffered broken ribs, a cut head and hand injuries.
He later suffered a blood clot due to a deep vein thrombosis. The pain from his injuries meant he could not move.
He was treated at Wansbeck Hospital, Ashington, Northumberland, part of Northumbria NHS Trust, and discharged.
Carol Swainston, Mr Hind's partner, told the inquest: “He sat downstairs as he couldn’t manage the stairs.
“He kept waking up during the night and was in a lot of pain the next morning. I went to the doctors for painkillers.
“He wanted the toilet on September 13 and I helped him there and he fell to his knees. I called an ambulance, but he died.”
Dr Jacqueline Hardcastle, of Wansbeck Hospital, said Mr Hind had been assessed and his chest x-rayed.
She said broken ribs were hard to spot and medics were not aware Mr Hind had so many. Dr Hardcastle said medics re-examined the x-ray after the death but could still not see six breaks.
Dr Hardcastle said if it was know he had six broken ribs he would have been kept in, adding that Mr Hind had walked about the ward and it was felt he could be discharged with painkillers.
Mr Tweddle said: “A complication like this might be unusual but I’d like to think it’s a factor Northumbria NHS Trust will consider in the future.”
A verdict of accidental death was recorded. No-one was available from the NHS trust to comment tonight.