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WOMAN DIES AFTER ‘FREAK ACCIDENT’ WITH GARAGE DOOR IN CAMBRIDGE APARTMENT BLOCK

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A woman has died in a freak incident after reportedly getting caught in a garage door. The woman, understood to be in her 30s, is thought to have got into difficulty while accessing the automatic rolling shutters to a private parking basement. It's believed she was visiting a friend who lives at the Ruth Bagnall Court in Cambridge, Cambs., at the time of the incident at around 7pm on Sunday. It's not known if she was leaving or entering the car park when the tragedy occurred.

One woman who lives in the block and does not wish to be named, said: "I came outside because I saw the victim's friend crying. "I said 'what's the matter?' and she said something had happened." A man who also lives at the site said: "I do not think she lived here. She was visiting a friend I believe. It is a horrible situation."

The emergency services including police, paramedics, firefighters and the air ambulance were called to the scene.

A Cambridgeshire Police spokesman said: "We were called to reports of a sudden death of a woman in Ruth Bagnall Court, Coleridge Road, Cambridge at about 7.30pm on Sunday. "The incident has been referred to the Health and Safety Executive."

A spokesman for East of England Ambulance Service, said: "We were called at 7.25pm on Sunday after reports of a woman unconscious and not breathing. "Sadly there was nothing that could be done for the patient and she died at the scene. "The woman is believed to be in her 40s."

There are 72 flats in the four-storey block, which was built in 2004 as part of a £10.5m housing scheme to provide housing for key workers such as teachers and fire fighters. Following their completion, the block was named after former Cambridge Labour councillor Ruth Bagnall, 38, who died from breast cancer in April 2004 after devoting her career to housing issues. Most of the flats are now privately owned and are worth around £190,000, and many are rented out to private tenants who pay around £800-per-month in rent. The block is managed by housing company Luminus.

One man said: "I have lived here for five years and that door is always breaking. There is an automatic key fob that sometimes works and sometimes doesn't. "I don't know how she got into trouble but the door is automatic and is supposed to stop when it catches on something for safety purposes."

Another woman, who didn't wish to be named, said: "I've been here for three years and there's always problems. "The garage door to the car parking is always breaking, so are the doors to the block of flats and people are always stealing bikes."

Luminus has been contacted for comment.

Richard Jackson, Founder of Gate Safe, made the following statement:

“Although this tragic accident does not involve a gate per se, the safety principles remain the same. Any machine which has been designed to allow pedestrian or vehicular access must ALWAYS be installed in line with the correct features / accepted best industry practice designed to deliver a safe and compliant device’

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