Boy, four, died after he was electrocuted by modified desk lamp while playing

Oliver Walker, four, died when he was electrocuted by a modified desk lamp in a caravan where he kept his toys, an inquest heard. (Picture: SWNS)

A four-year-old boy died when he was electrocuted by a modified desk lamp, an inquest heard.

Oliver Walker was found by his mum holding the black desk lamp on the floor of a caravan that his family were using while their farmhouse home was being renovated.

After finding him on 13 March, 2018, mum Charlotte started CPR on top of a bail of hay while Oliver’s uncle Ben Walker frantically dialled 999 but he was pronounced dead at hospital.

The cause of death of the “bright young boy”, who lived on a farm in Keighley, West Yorkshire, with his parents Charlotte and Andrew Walker and his younger sister, was electrocution, the inquest heard.

Oliver was found by his mother grasping the black desk lamp on the floor of a caravan his family were using while their farmhouse home was being renovated. (Picture: SWNS)

Bradford Coroner’s Court heard that the family were carrying out building work on their farm at the time of the accident and had bought two caravans in December 2017 - one for temporary living and one to use as a "utility".

Oliver's “outside toys” were kept in the caravan where he was found, the hearing was told and he had gone to play with them after being picked up from school.

In a statement his mother Charlotte said when she found him she originally thought he was "playing about".

When she realised what had happened, she screamed for his uncle who started CPR then she took over.


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The inquest heard that the desk lamp - which had never been seen by Oliver’s family before - had been modified to be used with a 12v supply.

However, the mains electricity supplied to the caravan was 240v - the usual voltage for household sockets - and the chrome rods connecting the base to the bulb had conducted this electricity once plugged in.

An RCD device that is supposed to trip the electricity if there is a fault was not working properly, the inquest heard.

Charlotte said she had never seen the lamp before and assumed it had come with the caravan.

Oliver Walker's father Andrew leaving Bradford Coroners Court at the inquest. (Picture: SWNS)

The inquest heard that an investigation by West Yorkshire Police with the health and safety executive found the original owner of the caravan admitted to police he owned the lamp but had no knowledge of purchasing it or making any modifications to it.

He sold the caravan - which originally had no electricity supply - as scrap to Wainman's Dealers in Silsden, West Yorks., who then sold it to the Walker family in December 2017.

West Yorkshire Police excluded any third party involvement or individual who could be identified.

Recording a narrative conclusion, coroner Martin Fleming said: "He was such a much loved son, brother and nephew.

"He was a lot of things to a lot of people. [Oliver] was a bright little boy with intelligence beyond his years.

"It has and continues to leave a massive void in all of our lives."

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