Victim of a freak gust

Fire Crews survey the damage after a lorry was blown over in Dewsbury Road, Leeds, at the foot of Bridgewater Tower trapping two people.  10 March 2011.'Picture Bruce Rollinson
Fire Crews survey the damage after a lorry was blown over in Dewsbury Road, Leeds, at the foot of Bridgewater Tower trapping two people. 10 March 2011.'Picture Bruce Rollinson

THE man fatally crushed when a lorry was blown on to him by gale-force winds was from Sowerby Bridge.

The victim of the horrific accident in Leeds city centre on Thursday afternoon was yesterday named locally as Edward Slaney, 35, from Upper Gaukroger, off Sowerby New Road.

He was waiting to cross Neville Street opposite the Bridgewater Place skyscraper when the curtain-sided lorry was sent hurtling across the road on to him by strong gusts.

A 22-year-old woman from Leeds who was standing in the same place was also trapped by the huge vehicle.

Nearby workmen used a digger to lift the lorry and enable the pair to be pulled free.

Both were taken to Leeds General Infirmary where Mr Slaney later died.

The woman was still in hospital last night with serious injuries.

One witness, 19-year-old Matthew Hooks, climbed under the lorry to help get the pair out.

“I pushed the guy out so other people could reach him and then got the woman out and held her hand until the paramedics arrived.”

Mr Hook’s friend, Kieran Harris, also 19, said they were driving nearby when he saw the lorry turn over in his mirror.

“It looked like it went over with some real force and we ran straight over to help but didn’t realise there were people trapped underneath at first,” he said.

The lorry driver is understood to have been able to clamber from his cab.