Man fighting for his life in hospital

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A CLEANER is still fighting for his life in intensive care after falling 50ft at the Newlands Shopping Centre in Kettering on Sunday.

The 34-year-old from Wiltshire was last night in a critical condition with a fractured skull and broken ankle and ribs at Walsgrave Hospital in Coventry.

The man was airlifted to the hospital after falling while cleaning the inside windows of the centre lift shaft near to 99p Stores at 2.45pm.

He was stablised by attending emergency services before being released from the lift and placed on to an air ambulance soon after 4pm.

It is understood that the man was working for Swindon-based subcontractor Superior Access Solutions at the centre for just the one day when he suffered the fall.

Yesterday, health and safety officers at Kettering Council confirmed they were launching an initial investigation into what had happened.

Incidents which occur in public places are more often dealt with by the local authority than the Health and Safety Executive.

The centre’s manager, Neil Griffin, has been receiving regular updates on the condition of the man.

He said: “We’re all hoping he pulls through OK.

“I think many of us are still in a bit of shock about what happened.”

Yesterday the Evening Telegraph reported the man had fallen 20ft, but Mr Griffin said the distance was more following internal investigations.

The centre was fully open again yesterday with only the affected lift temporarily closed.

Two air ambulances landed in the town centre following the man’s fall.

Police closed Northall Street before cordoning off an area around the lift.

Centre managers then made the decision to close the centre so paramedics could treat the man.

Three teams of firefighters were also called to help free the man from the basement of the shaft.

Using ropes, they hauled the man on to a stretcher where he was stabalised and then sent off to hospital.

Yesterday, readers of the Evening Telegraph’s website described their shock at what had happened.

One reader called Katyana said: “All I can say is I commend the emergency services staff and their swift action at the scene.

“Best wishes to the poor gentleman and his family, get well soon.”