Three-year-old killed by truck driven by father on family farm, inquest hears
Pembrokeshire and Carmarthenshire Coroner’s Court heard the boy was riding his bike in a secure farmyard with his elder sister and cousin when he was fatally injured by the 8ft-long trailer.
His father, Guto Jenkins, 32, was running a business from the farm selling topsoil and had taken the three children with him on a delivery.
They had returned to the farm and Mr Jenkins had parked his VW Amarok and trailer in the farmyard because the two older children wanted to play on their bikes instead of joining him for another delivery.
“The only reason I drove through the farmyard was because I dropped my children and their cousin off who had come with me for my first delivery of topsoil,” Mr Jenkins said in a written statement.
“After I had collected my second load of topsoil, I drove back into the farmyard to collect Ianto who had wanted to come with me again.”
Mr Jenkins explained the children were playing in the farmyard outside the main house and the gates had been shut to create a safe area.
“He said that he now wanted to stay at the farm with his sister and at this point he was well away from the trailer,” Mr Jenkins said.
“I checked both my wing mirrors and they showed the rear and the sides of the trailer to be clear and I then looked over my shoulder to the nearside to check the blind spot.
“Satisfied it was safe to do so, I then just pulled away forward and drove up the farm track to the road.
“I pulled away slowly and in a controlled manner and did not roll backwards at all.
“The only thing I can think of now is that either Ianto must have been in a blind spot, or he had moved into the vicinity of the trailer while I was looking in my other mirror or ahead in order to make sure this area was clear.
“I did not see him at all despite checking my mirrors and looking over my shoulder before pulling away.
“When I got to the top of the track, I received a call from my Mum and my Mum kept saying Ianto was dead. It was the worst call of my life.”
Mr Jenkins, who is divorced from his children’s mother, added: “There is not a day goes by when I do not think of Ianto.
“As his father the circumstances of his death aged only three is a waking nightmare which I will live with for the rest of my life.
“I still have flashbacks to the accident and there is not a day goes by when I do not think about what happened. The pain and guilt will stay with me for the rest of my life.”
Mr Jenkins’s mother, Meinir Jenkins, told the court she was inside the farmhouse when she heard Ianto’s older sister.
“I believed Ianto had gone with him. All of a sudden she came running in saying, ‘Quick Granny, Ianto is dead’,” she said.
“She is such a dramatic child, so I thought she was exaggerating and maybe Ianto had grazed his knee.
“I ran out and could see Ianto was lying on the ground still on his bike. At this point I thought he had fallen off his bike.”
Mrs Jenkins said she went over to her grandson and could see he was dead, so covered his body with a towel.
A post-mortem examination found the boy had suffered a “catastrophic” head injury and would have died instantaneously.
The inquest at Llanelli Town Hall heard investigators found no faults with the pick-up truck or the trailer.
Health and Safety Executive inspector Rhys Hughes said blood found on the trailer indicated Ianto had been struck by it rather than the pick-up.
An inquest jury has retired to consider its conclusion.
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