Westwoodside widow’s fury at firm after lorry tragedy

Susan Jarman, of Westwoodside, pictured with a photograph of her late husband Keith, who was tragically killed at work while unloading a lorry.  Picture: Liz Mockler E1455LM
Susan Jarman, of Westwoodside, pictured with a photograph of her late husband Keith, who was tragically killed at work while unloading a lorry. Picture: Liz Mockler E1455LM

THE heartbroken widow of a trucker killed while making Christmas deliveries has hit out at his employers.

Keith Jarman, 65, is thought to have been crushed by a metal delivery cage while unloading produce at a supermarket just days before Christmas.

Widow Susan, 61, hit out this week after revealing the company he worked for, logistics specialists DHL, did not send her a letter of condolence over the Christmas period.

The company offered their support this week, but Mrs Jarman of The Birches, Westwoodside, said their “scrooge-like” handling of the whole tragedy had been like a “kick in the teeth”.

She said: “A policeman told me what happened and I arranged to collect Keith’s things and his car at the depot in Scunthorpe.

“I expected to be met by someone from transport management at least, but it was a lad who worked in the warehouse who came out to meet me.

“He expressed sympathy but he was mortified at having to do it. It was unfair on him.”

She added: “I saw that the firm had expressed sympathy in a statement to the press, but they have not written to me at all.

“That was like a kick in the teeth seeing that.

“I don’t want to be mollycoddled. I have done all my crying, but a letter of sympathy or condolence from the company would be nice.

“I would describe it as scrooge-like, totally unsympathetic.”

She also claimed the popular grandfather-of-two, a well known fisherman and wood turner, had been in two previous accidents in the last 12 months.

West Yorkshire Police and the Health and Safety Executive launched an investigation.

Meanwhile, Mrs Jarman is considering taking legal action against the firm.

“There is a lot to sort out of course because it has only just happened, but I may look into taking legal action further down the line.

“He crashed into the barrier of the hard shoulder of the M18 in June last year.

“He was lucky to escape that alive and was really quite shook up by it.

“And on another occasion he was unloading a double decker when the top one fell off and nearly hit him.

“He survived those two, but the third one got him.”

She continued: “Keith will be dearly missed.

“We will have to move forward but it’s so hard.

“I haven’t got his body back yet because I’m waiting for the post mortem to be done.

“Then we will have the inquest to go through, which none of us are looking forward to.

“There is no good time for something so terrible to happen of course but for it to be just before Christmas, it really has come at the very worst time for us.”

The fatal accident happened on Saturday, December 22, at about 9am while Mr Jarman was unloading at the Oasis Nisa local supermarket in Crown Street, Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire.

A spokesperson for West Yorkshire Police said a joint investigation with the Health and Safety Executive could “take months” to complete.

A spokeswoman for West Yorkshire (Western District) Coroners’ office said a post mortem examination was due to be conducted last week.

Coroner Peter Straker has been made aware of the death and is expected to open an inquest once the autopsy results are in.

Mrs Jarman said she had still not received a condolence letter from DHL at the time of going to press.

But a company spokesperson said: “We offer our deepest sympathies to Mr Jarman’s bereaved family, and are in ongoing contact with Mrs Jarman to help in any way we can at this difficult time.

“We are cooperating fully with the police, and Health and Safety Executive in their investigations.

“However, while this is underway we are unable to comment further.”