Boy, 8, died in ‘freak accident’ while cycling

A schoolboy died in a tragic freak accident after he sustained a fatal injury during a fall from his bike.

Roan Harrington, 8, from Ballydonegan, Allihies, West Cork, died as he cycled less than half a mile from his home on Aug 28, 2011. He was due to start second class the following day.

An inquest yesterday heard how one side of the handlebar pierced his liver in “exactly the wrong spot”.

Roan and his two older brothers, Euan, 12, and Oran, 10, had brought their dogs for a run when the accident happened shortly after 4.30pm.

In a statement, his brother Euan told how they were cycling at normal speed and then stopped at a bridge when they noticed Roan was missing.

Julie Cooper, who has a holiday home in Allihies, found Roan lying “entangled in a bike” on the road.

He told her “I’ve fallen off my bike”, before lifting his shirt to show his injury. An ambulance was called but he was pronounced dead en route to Bantry Hospital.

Sergeant Fachtna O’Donovan described the incident as “very tragic, freak accident”.

“It looks as if he fell on top of the handlebar on his bike, there was a mark on his chest but the skin wasn’t broken it was just a mark,” he said.

Assistant state pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster said the cause of death was bleeding due to a laceration of the liver due to blunt force trauma sustained in a bicycle accident.

“It hit at the exact wrong spot, just under the breastbone and pinned the liver to the back bone,” she said.

Returning a verdict of accidental death, coroner Frank O’Connell said the case was one of the “saddest he had come across”.


More in this Section

Irish businessmen lose Vat-avoidance case

Cork Penny Dinners seeking Christmas presents ahead of holiday season preparations

Tánaiste under fire: Fitzgerald humiliated as Government makes fifth U-turn on McCabe

Mother tells inquest she ‘sensed’ tragic drowning


Breaking Stories

Mum talks of 'immense' heartbreak of stillborn baby Asha's loss; medical misadventure verdict given

Man paid €20 to put pipe bomb under prison officer's car gets five years in jail

Man found with more than €600k of drugs told gardaí he wanted 'to make a few quid'

Brussels police bundle Luke 'Ming' Flanagan down street after bid to enter invite-only EU defence meeting

Lifestyle

The 40-year-old charity that ensures no-one dies alone and poor

Equal treatment is at the heart of a healthy society

Pussy Riot perform in Ireland five years after making headlines

More From The Irish Examiner