Student's Death On Railway Line

An inquest's heard how a drunken student was electrocuted on a railway line as he tried to find a shortcut home on a cold winter's night after being ejected from a nightclub.

Joshua Wynn, 19, had been out drinking with friends at the Tiger Tiger nightclub in Portsmouth, Hampshire, on January 11, 2010.

Toby Godwin, a friend since primary school, said that Mr Wynn had been drinking cans of Strongbow cider before they went out and had consumed about five vodka and Red Bulls inside the nightclub.

He said that his friend was drunk but not boisterous.

Mr Godwin said:

"He was quite drunk, I didn't think he was as bad as I had seen him before.''

But the inquest heard that Mr Wynn, from Stroud, Gloucestershire, was ejected from the club because he stumbled over a bouncer's foot as he returned from getting some fresh air in the outdoor smoking area.

The University of Portsmouth maths student was captured on CCTV running off in a direction away from his normal route back to his halls of residence at about 12.30am (January 12).

It is believed the teenager, who was only wearing a short-sleeved shirt and jeans, then climbed over a fence on to the railway line in the hope of finding a shortcut back home.

But at about 1.15am, an empty train travelling along the line ran over his body.

Portsmouth coroner David Horsley said that a post mortem showed that Mr Wynn had been electrocuted by the live rail and would have died instantaneously.

He would have been dead prior to the train arriving, the inquest heard.

Recording a verdict of accidental death, Mr Horsley said:

"With his friends, he has had a lot to drink that night.

"It was a snowy, cold night and he was wearing a short-sleeved shirt, he was running to keep warm and get back as quickly as possible.

"Why he hadn't taken the normal route, sadly only Joshua can tell us but probably he was confused because he has had a lot to drink.

"I think it is clouded judgment. This is a tragic accident and I am so awfully, awfully sorry.''