THE mother of a little girl crushed to death by an electronic gate has spoken of her agony at failing to save her.
Six-year-old Semelia Campbell was playing with a friend near her home on Carnival Place, Moss Side, Manchester, on Monday night when the motorised gate closed on her.
Her mother Judith Gilroy was among the first on the scene and she tried in vain to free her daughter who was pinned against a brick post.
Ms Gilroy, 41, yesterday visited the spot where the accident happened as family and friends tearfully laid flowers.
She said she tried pressing the electronic button to open the gate, and also tried to use a remote control, but neither worked.
She said the accident would not have happened if the gates had been secured.
“This should never have happened,” she said. “The gates are chained up now but they were not secured.
“She was my whole life, I don’t know how I will go on without her.”
The gates led on to a building site close to the Maine Place development where Semelia’s family moved three weeks ago.
Many of the houses in the area are still under construction.
The schoolgirl was eventually freed when police broke off an electronic box.
She was rushed to Manchester Royal Infirmary but died from her injuries a short time later.
It is thought Semelia suffered a heart attack as well as massive crush injuries.
Greater Manchester Police and the Health and Safety Executive launched an investigation.
Nobody from the Health and Safety Executive was available to comment but their guidelines require developers to take steps to prevent people getting trapped in electric gates.
Pressure-sensitive strips and infra-red detectors are both recommended.
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