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...--------PENSION DAY.



SAD FATALITY AT HAVERFORD- WEST. FLANELETTE CONDEMNED. The dangers of flanelette clothing for child- ren was illustrated on Saturday at an inquest on the death of a little boy at Portfield on Christmas Eve. It appears that on Christmas .Eve. Annie-Laugnarne, a young married woman living at 104, Portfield, went into her garden to spread clothes, and left her two-year-old boy and a child of sixteen months in the kitchen alone. After a short absence she heard screams and on going into the house found the elder child in flames. In her evidence before the coroner (Mr. Price) and a jury on Saturday morning the mother recounted the circum- stances surrounding the fatality. The boy was wearing a flanelette frock and a. pinafore and there was no screen before the fire during the time that the children were left to themselves. The child never spoke after the accident which took place about half past three in the afternoon and it died about half past live on Christmas morning. Mary Laugharne, grandmother of the deceased Albert Edward Laugharne, said she lived at Sutton. She was sent for on Christmas eve, and on receiving the message about 5.30 came into town. When she got to the house they were applying oil to the child's injuries. Most of the burns were across the chest, under the chin, between the shoulders and under the arhls. The doctor came soon after her arrival. The child was not crying when she went in and was able to recognise her. Dr. Brigstocke deposed that he was called to see the child about six o'clock on the evening mentioned. He found it lying on the bed in a thorough state of collapse practically pulse- less. Upon examination he discovered that both arms were burnt very severely and that the flesh was hanging in strips near the elbow. It had been also badly burnt over the upper part of the chest, around the neck and up the left side of the head, the injuries also covering the shoulders at the back. It was an absolutely hopeless case and the child never rallied from the shock. The child was conscious, but there was a perfect absence of pain. The parents had applied some oil and he dressed him thoroughly. The Coroner (to the mother): The doctor was not summoned until 2& hours after the accident. Why did you not send at once i—I did not tlnk that the child was so bad. The Coroner, in summing 1.1p, said that as in most of these cases, the child was clothed in flanelette. Parents could procure material of equal cheapness and durability if they asked for it at the shops. He believed that public oninion would soon find expression in legisla- tion making it offence to leave young children in a room with a fire expo-iid trl them. He quite appreciated the difficulty 1u.t poor people had in get-ting some one to look after the chilo- ren during their abseucc, but tucse cases should lead them to secure a eneau the serecn. In this case the jury could curly return a vcrdict of accidental death- Dr. Brigstocke pointed out that flanellettc was a most.dangerous thing and he did wish people would not use it.

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