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Bloke’s heartbreak after crushing his own brother to death in lorry tragedy

The tearful brother of an industrial site worker has told of how he accidentally drove over and killed his own "big-hearted" sibling.

David Potter, 57, was showing his brother Mark Potter, a lorry for sale at Harris Commercial Repairs Ltd in Basildon, Essex.

Mark said he had been "excited" to see David as they hadn't seen each other in a while and after a "hug and a kiss" the brothers went to check out the vehicle.

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Mark, who was 55 at the time, told the inquest at Essex Coroner's Court yesterday (Jan 19) of how he had been waiting in the lorry for ten minutes after agreeing to do a test drive.

Mark – who was interested in buying the HGV – decided to start the engine and drive off after waiting, not knowing David was in front of the lorry on Oct 4, 2019.

David was pronounced dead at the scene.

Mark, now 58, told the coroner of how he lurched forward with the vehicle before he heard David "shouting".

Mark, from Higham in Kent said in a tearful statement: "I saw him in the mirror at the back of the vehicle.

"I lost sight of him then, I couldn't see him in either of my mirrors. I sat there for some time, I don't know how long it was and I thought 'just go on your own'. At that point I moved the vehicle forward."

Realising what he'd done, he immediately called an ambulance and three arrived with an air ambulance at the scene shortly after 1pm.

Mark, who has a class 1 HGV license, told the jury that he did a full check in each mirror and windscreen before moving off.

Mark said it "looked like" David had been fitting trade license plates at the back of the vehicle when he last saw him.

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He said he had moved the automatic vehicle at barely half a mile an hour before he heard shouting and turned off the engine.

He added: "I couldn't see him, I didn't know what it was. The last place I saw him was at the back, I went around to the back and he wasn't there.

"I went all the way around to the front and I saw his glasses and phone at the front. He was at the front of it."

A colleague of David's then he rushed out of one of the buildings to the sounds of a female voice shouting "call an ambulance".

Graham Walsh, another colleague, found David under the lorry and later used a forklift truck to help lift the lorry off him so the paramedics could help.

Kelly Spratt, Mark's partner who had come with him for the visit was waiting in their car before she saw Mark run passed reception.

She heard him say: "My brother's under the lorry."

Mark was arrested by Essex Police but later released without charge. The inquest will conclude today (Jan 20) to determine David's cause of death.

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