27th Sep, 2020

Man killed himself after taking hazardous chemical sparking major bio-hazard emergency, inquest hears

A MAN killed himself after taking a hazardous chemical sparking a major bio-hazard emergency, an inquest has heard.

Twenty-five year-old Ashley Walker died after taking a lethal dose of sodium nitrite.

Emergency services were called just after 1.30pm on August 12 and sealed off the area around the house on Oaks Road in Kenilworth.

Witnesses said officers and fire crews wearing hazmat suits went into the home and then tried to resuscitate Mr Walker for 45 minutes before he was pronounced dead.

Warwickshire senior coroner Sean McGovern said: “Mr Walker had taken a hazardous chemical in an attempt to take his own life.

“Based on the circumstances and information provided it’s my opinion that the likely cause of death is due to sodium nitrite toxicity.

“We are awaiting reports from the mental health trust. I offer my condolences to the family of Ashley Walker.”

Fire crews wearing masks and oxygen tanks were seen leaving the terraced house to wash their equipment before returning inside.

Speaking at the time, one neighbour said: “There were nine ambulances at one point, as well as police and fire crews.

“Firemen wearing hazmat suits and oxygen canisters were going in and out.”

The inquest was adjourned until next January.

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