Date of death
10 December 2003
Tanya, an adventure instructor and operations director of Adventure Unlimited, was preparing to give a zip wire lesson to a disabled man with a cerebral palsy sufferer at Blackland Farm activity centre in East Grinstead.
The disabled man's carer raised the alarm when she arrived on the scene and found Tanya strangled by her helmet strap on the 45ft long slide. A second harness, which would usually have been attached to a zip wire, was on the ground beneath her.
Staff could not resuscitate Ms Bocking, and she was pronounced dead on arrival at the Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath.
The inquest was held at East Sussex Coroner’s Court in February 2005 and returned a verdict of Misadventure. Pathologist Andrew Rainey said the cause of death was given as asphyxiation due to ligature strangulation.
Coroner Alan Craze said, 'Because of her experience I do not believe on the balance of probability she would have deliberately set off down the zip wire with the karabina in the position where it was found, suspended by the top (chest) harness alone. The dangers are obvious and it would be at the very best an uncomfortable ride. Whatever went wrong went wrong up on the (zip wire) platform... that is where she got in trouble. Whether she attempted to get out of the situation and by accident put her foot in the wrong place and then fell off I don't know but I am reasonably satisfied she did step off by accident.'
Speaking after the hearing, Tanya's brother Nat Bocking called for tighter safety measures at outdoor centres to prevent similar accidents. 'Measures such as handrails on the platform might have saved her life,' he said.
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