A Merseyside County Council has been criticized today for its catalog of failures that drove a huge tree to fall on the car of a very pregnant mother, killing her baby.

Liz Stear was 36 weeks pregnant and was driving along Arrowe Park Road to Wirral, when a large horse chestnut branch fell on her Audi A4, breaking her windshield and hitting her abdomen. .

The baby, named Lucia, was born by an emergency cesarean section, but died at the hospital at the age of 15 hours as a result of the November 10, 2016 incident.

Today, a two-week investigation is over, with a jury deciding on a hard-hitting verdict that revealed how much the Wirral Council was repeatedly at fault before the tragedy.

And because a similar tree fall "almost missing" early 2015 had not been properly probed, nothing could prevent Lucia's sudden death, the Liverpool Coroner's Court announced.

The tot died as a result of an "accident", caused by local authorities "having not implemented a dynamic and efficient tree management system for the parks and the campaign up to the end. November 2016 ".

Liverpool Women's Hospital
Liverpool Women's Hospital

The verdict added: "There was a complete failure to put in place a tree management policy in the parks and the countryside, and a complete lack of risk management for trees likely to fall on the highways.

"There had been no official tree inspection in Arrowe Park for 13 years."

In January 2015, almost two years ago, no lesson on a different tree fell on Arrowe Park Road.

The narrative verdict continued as follows: "Inadequate measures were taken to investigate the failing beech tree that fell on Arrowe Park Road in January 2015 and rectify the mistakes that had been made, including by not recruiting and not employing it. specialized staff for tree management.

"If the incident had been properly investigated, tree repairs along the Arrowe Park Road boundary would have been completed.

"We missed opportunities to avoid other serious incidents, despite staff concerns and near misses."

The Wirral Council has been criticized for its repeated failures in relation to the death of Lucia Stear
The Wirral Council has been criticized for its repeated failures in relation to the death of Lucia Stear

A jury also agreed that the chestnut tree that fell on Mrs. Stear's car was clearly riddled with "bleeding chancre", which would have been evident over the past four years.

The verdict stated: "The Parks and Countryside staff had not been adequately trained in tree management and hazard identification, there was no training program Mandatory or arboreal agent employed by Wirrral City Council since 2003. "

Finally, the jury concluded that there was "a systemic lack of accountability and poor communication within the departments of the Wirral District Council".

The mother of three family said she felt a "period-type pain" when she was in the ambulance and repeatedly asked to be taken to the Arrowe Park Hospital, located at proximity, where was the accident.

But Ms. Stear, whose other two children were in the car at the time, was taken to Aintree Hospital.

The court, sitting in Kirkdale, heard: "… a midwife could not locate Lucia's heartbeat.

Mother Liz Stear was transported to Aintree Hospital after the collapse of a tree
Mother Liz Stear was transported to Aintree Hospital after the collapse of a tree

At 9:10, a quick scan was made, showing that Lucia's heart was beating slowly at about 60 beats per minute.

"At 9:19, it was decided to take Mrs. Stear for an emergency laparotomy and a caesarean section.

"She arrived at the theater at 9:30 am and at 10:01 am Lucia was born without any sign of life.

Lucia was resuscitated by teams from Aintree Hospital and Liverpool Women's Hospital, and North West Ambulance was transferred to Liverpool Women's Hospital and arrived at 12:40.

"The tests showed that Lucie had a multi-organ failure and was extubated, she died at 11:11 on November 11, 2016."

It is considered that a baby is born at term if born between 37 and 42 weeks of age, which means that Mrs. Stear's pregnancy was just before that stage.

Read more

Top news

At Liverpool Coroner's Court, in Kirkdale, legal representatives of the Liverpool Women's Hospital, Wirral Council. Northwest ambulance services, Merseyside Police, Health and Safety Officer (HSE) and Stear family lawyers attended the proceedings.

Until now, the Alistair family did not wish to comment.