Man charged over boat deaths

Lauren Thornton, left, and her mother Kelly Webster died last year (Cumbria Police/PA)

Lauren Thornton, left, and her mother Kelly Webster died last year (Cumbria Police/PA)

First published in National News © by

A man has been ch arged with manslaughter after his girlfriend and her young daughter were killed by carbon monoxide poisoning.

Kelly Webster, 36, and her 10-year-old daughter, Lauren Thornton, died while on an Easter boating holiday in the Lake District last year.

An interim report by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) found they were poisoned as they slept on a moored motor cruiser on Lake Windermere.

Exhaust fumes from a generator, whose improvised exhaust and silencer system had become detached, had spread into the cabin.

The boat's carbon monoxide alarm was not triggered because it was not connected to a power supply, the report found.

Cumbria Police today said Matthew Eteson, t he vessel's owner who lived with Ms Webster, has been charged with manslaughter by gross negligence.

According to the MAIB, the 40-year-old woke up in the boat's forward cabin on April 1 last year suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning.

He raised the alarm but the mother and daughter could not be revived.

The pair were treated by paramedics and were airlifted to Royal Lancaster Infirmary, where they died.

Eteson, from Church Road, Leyland in Lancashire, will appear before South Lakeland Magistrates' Court, Barrow-In-Furness, next Wednesday.

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