A 17-year-old girl died in front of her dad when the locks and handbrake of their family car were triggered automatically, sending it flying downhill.
Aaliyah Sedley-Jones, known as Lily, was sitting in the vehicle by herself when, ‘for an unknown reason’, she decided to start the engine, an inquest heard.
This caused the automatic handbrake to disengage and despite her father Benjamin Jones’ best desperate efforts to open the doors, he could not stop the Citroen rolling away.
The car locked automatically due to the speed it was rolling, leaving Mr Jones to watch in horror as the vehicle crashed into a wall and flipped over.
Death ruled an ‘accident’
An inquest heard that Lily died in the crash in Spring Hill, Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, on 5 January.
Mr Jones told the hearing on Monday (15 August) that he saw his daughter in the driver’s seat and heard her start the engine, the BBC reports.
The coroner was told the doors of a Citroen C4 lock automatically when the car reaches a speed of 6mph.
The teenager’s dad told the inquest: “I couldn’t hold on to it any longer.
“I have no idea why Lily got into the driver’s seat and tried to drive the car."
The rolling vehicle hit a grass verge, followed by a wall and a lamppost before flipping on top of the 17-year-old.
Neighbours, family members and paramedics desperately tried to rescue her, but Lily tragically died at the scene shortly before 9pm.
Police told the inquest that Lily had not driven the car before and only held a provisional licence.
No faults were found on the vehicle and coroner Maria Voisin ruled the death an "accident”, with the cause of death given as cerebral injuries.
‘Taken too soon’
Paying tribute at the time of her death, Lily’s mother said in a statement: "Lily you were taken just as your life was beginning and you were so excited for everything you had to look forward to.
"You made the most of every single day of your life. You were my best friend, a breath of fresh air and you lit up any and every room you walked into.
"You were so scared of losing anyone you loved and the only comfort I have is that at least now you will never have to suffer the pain everyone that knows you is feeling right now.
"You genuinely were too perfect for this cruel world and the time where I can be with you again cannot come soon enough.
"Your four brothers and all of your family and friends will keep your memory alive as long as we all live.
‘’We will never stop talking about you as you were the most caring, considerate, loving, funny, most beautiful girl and the time we had with you we will cherish forever.
"Taken from us at the worst age of only 17 in a sudden tragic accident that will forever haunt us.
"We were proud of you every moment of every day and we love you more than you could ever imagine my beautiful Lily."