Mexborough & Swinton Times, July 21
Killed in the Sump
Elderly Conisboro´ Dataller´s Death
Caught by Cage in Cadeby Pit Shaft
Mr. Frank Allen held an inquiry at the Fullerton Hospital, Denaby Main, on Monday into the death of Arthur Mewes (55), a dataller, of 3, Ivanhoe road, Conisborough, employed at Cadeby Main Colliery. Mewes was killed on Saturday morning being crushed by a descending cage whilst working in the sump at the bottom of the No. 1 lift shaft.
Frank Singleton 35, Ivanhoe road, Conisborough, an onsetter, said on Saturday morning he was working with Mewes, cleaning up the sump at the bottom of No. 1 Shaft. The cages were both standing in the shaft; one cage would be 40 yards off.
About 5 o´clock, he wished to move the cage to get some men out. Singleton left the sump to make way for the cage´s descent, and warned Mewes to keep the wall side, and Mewes responded. He was then in a position of perfect safety. Except for a little cleaning up Mewes had finished his shift. There was no need for the deceased to go under the cage after Singleton left the sump. When the cage descended, Singleton heard a shriek, and another workman said “Mewes is under”. The cage was raised and Mewes was found lying on his side. He was conscious, but his nose and mouth were bleeding profusely. On being questioned as to the accident, he said “I don´t know”. He was at once taken from the pit. Witness thought that Mewes had finished his work and was in the act of leaving the sump when he was caught by the cage. Mewes himself had been an onsetter.
Arthur Hamson, of 73, Garden Lane, in charge of “hydraulic” machinery, heard Singleton say, “Just scrape that bit along the wall side and look out”. He didn´t hear Singleton give warning that the cage was to be removed. Witness saw Mewes standing by the wall with his hand on his shovel. When found Mewes was lying at the opposite side of the sump. Hamson heard a shout as the chain came down, and called for the chain to be raised. When the chain had been raised Mewes was found lying on his side.
Nurse Stead matron of the Fullerton ~Hospital, said Mewes was admitted at 5.45 on Saturday morning, suffering from a fracture of the spine. He died at 7.45 a.m.
The Coroner explained that the reason which prompted Mewes to cross under the cage could not be ascertained. There was a perfectly safe way out of the sump, if he had only made his way round by the hydraulics.
Mr. H. Hulley expressed the sympathy of the company with the bereaved family. Mewes had been a faithful servant of the company for over 20 years, and had been given a light job to help him through the remainder of his days. Mr. T. J. Gregory associated himself, on behalf of the Y.M.A., with Mr. Hulley´s expression of condolence.
A verdict was returned of “accidental death”.