Basildon: Woman's death was an accident

An inquest has ruled the death of a woman - who died when a car colldided with a fire engine in Basildon - was an accident.

Martha Gakonde died after the incident in Broadmayne on September 9, last year. 

Today the coroner returned a verdict of 'accidental death'. 

After the hearing, Assistant Chief Fire Officer Dave Bill said: "This verdict underlines our unwavering belief that this was a tragic and unavoidable accident. 

"Our own investigations and those of the Police concluded that the driver of the appliance involved could not have done anything differently. 

"That aside, our sympathies remain with Mrs Gakonde?s family. 

"We will continue to support the driver of the appliance and his colleagues, who all remain deeply affected by the incident." 

In a family statement issued after the inquest, Mrs Gakonde's husband thanked emergency services who responded at the scene and the Police who conducted the investigation. 

To the firefighters involved he said he took comfort from his faith. "A normal day at work ended rather differently from what you expected. 

No doubt you would have been greatly affected too by this tragic incident but rest assured in the words of a famous hymn 'It is well within my soul'."