- 04 October 2012
Paramedics tried to revive Ms Wilson, but she was pronounced dead at the scene
A 31-year-old woman who was hit by a falling tree branch at the Royal Botanical Gardens in Kew died instantly, an inquest has heard. Erena Louise Wilson received "non-survival head injuries" when she was hit by the Lebanese cedar branch at the gardens in south-west London on Sunday.
Metropolitan Police officer Simon Young said witnesses heard a loud crack thinking it was thunder. They then turned around to see the account manager covered in branches. Mr Young said Ms Wilson, who was born in Wellington, New Zealand, but lived in Hanwell, west London, was out walking with friends when she was hit by the falling branch.
Speaking at West London Coroner's Court, he said: "They stated they were walking along a path and heard a loud crack believing it was thunder or something similar to that. "They looked up and saw the tree branch descending.
"They then ran and then looked back around and the lady was on the floor in an uncomfortable position, to say the least. There were lots of branches all around her." The officer, who attended the scene to take statements, added a post-mortem examination found the cause of death to be multiple injuries.
No mention was made in court of whether the strong winds in the area at the time played a part in the incident. The incident is being investigated by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
The inquest was adjourned to a later unfixed date.