Grim film of fatal gas blast

POLICE investigating the death of a 35-year-old man have the grim task of viewing film of his final moments before a gas cylinder exploded. Father-of-five Timmy Donaghue was killed last Friday when the cylinder exploded outside the Arthur Brook scrapyard at Low Mills Lane, Ravensthorpe.

Emergency services were called at about 10am and Mr Donaghue, of Arncliffe Road, Healey, was taken to Dewsbury and District Hospital where he died from serious head injuries.

Now police are trawling through CCTV footage which shows events leading up to the fatal incident. They are still trying to piece together what happened and how Mr Donaghue died.

Later police found a van containing gas cylinders in Ouzelwell Lane in Thornhill Lees. Police believe it was connected with the fatal incident.

At 1.30pm fire crews and a specialist hazardous materials team were called to make around 30 gas cylinders in the van safe.

The road was closed while homes in the immediate area were evacuated and residents in Ouzelwell Lane and Ouzelwell Road were advised to stay indoors with their windows closed.

Samina Ahmed, who lives in Ouzelwell Lane, said: "When I went to my sister's house down the road in the morning a van was parked there and I could smell some gas.

"As I walked by the van I could hear something hissing. You could hear it really loud.

"At about half one I saw the police come up. They moved the van to the side and the police told us it was a gas leak."

Another neighbour said: "We had to stay inside for ages and keep the windows closed.

"We were evacuated. It was for just about half an hour and then we were told we could come back."

Once experts from the British Oxygen Group had declared the van and its contents safe, the gas cylinders were unloaded and taken with the van for further examination. The road was later reopened.

As Mr Donaghue's partner Vickie and children Leonie, Macaulay, Keira, Ellie and Riley struggle to come to terms with their loss, investigations into the cause of the explosion continue.

A post-mortem examination was carried out earlier this week and an inquest will be held at a later date.

The family was too upset to speak but one woman, whose son knows them well, said: "Timmy was a lovely bloke, devoted to his family. It is such a shame."

She said Mr Donaghue was a 'bit of a character' and was well-liked in the area.

Anyone with information should ring Dewsbury CID on 01924 431085.