Nine-year-old Jordan Banks was fatally struck by lightning while playing football (Picture: PA/Dave Nelson)
The stepfather of a nine-year-old boy watched in horror as his stepson collapsed on a football pitch after being fatally struck by lightning, an inquest has heard.
Jordan Banks was struck while having a private coaching session on the Common Edge playing fields in Blackpool, Lancashire, on the evening of May 11.
An inquest at Blackpool Town Hall, which the little boy’s family did not attend, heard how the weather had suddenly changed in the last 10 minutes of his session.
Football coach Daniel Stenton said in a witness statement that they had decided to finish the training when thunder started.
Recounting the moment the bolt hit, he said: ‘All of a sudden I felt something. I can’t begin to explain it but it made me put my hands on my head.’
Stepfather Daniel Begg had been in his car watching Jordan finish training on the pitch when lightning struck shortly before 5pm.
Coroner Alan Wilson explained: ‘He [Mr Begg] sadly reports he saw lightning hit Jordan and he fell to the ground straight away.’
Emma Gleeson was waiting to take her son to training when she saw the bolt strike Jordan and quickly dialled 999.
Jordan had left sweets and chocolates on police cars to cheer up officers in January during lockdown (Picture: PA)
In a statement, Ms Gleeson said she saw the little boy immediately fall to the floor, before stepdad Mr Begg rushed out of his car to the boy’s aide.
She said: ‘Daniel clearly was thinking the same thing I was thinking and was saying: “He’s gone, he’s gone”.’
Paramedic Sharon Riley-Clarke and her colleague were called to the scene shortly after they witnessed a ‘loud and violent’ sudden lightning strike nearby, she said.
When they arrived at 5.01pm she said she saw Mr Begg crouched over Jordan in the field as he shouted to them: ‘He’s not breathing.’
‘He picked him up in his arms and was running to us,’ she said.
Jordan was rushed to Blackpool Victoria Hospital at about 5.30pm and was pronounced dead at 5.55pm, heard the court.
Floral tributes and signed shirts were left on the pitch where Jordan was struck (Picture: Dave Nelson)
The death was due to cardiac arrest following a direct lightning strike, said Consultant Paediatrician Dr Kate Goldberg.
A statement from Met Office scientist Alan Day said possible thunderstorms had been forecast for that evening – but no severe weather warning was issued because the overall risk fell below the levels required.
The coroner said: ‘All evidence indicates that once Jordan had been struck by lightning this was effectively going to be unsurvivable.’
‘This was an extremely rare occurrence,’ he added.
‘Although the weather had changed, it had changed very quickly and there appears to be no obvious reason why Jordan was struck by lightning.’
Mr Wilson, who recorded a short narrative conclusion, said he planned to write to the Government’s department for …read more
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