A “fearless and adventurous” 15-year-old died from brain injury after falling from the second storey of Brighton Marina carpark as he tried to find a short cut to the beach.
Jordan Jamieson-Castleton suffered a catastrophic brain injury as the result of the accident and died two weeks later on Friday 14 April at St George’s Hospital in London.
An inquest at Brighton and Hove Coroner’s court heard today (Thursday 27 July) that Jordan was walking through the car park with a friend.
They were on their way to meet other friends at the beach when the pair cut through the high rise car park, believing there to be steps giving access to the beach.
According to the friend accompanying Jordan, they reached level three of the car park and could see the beach but found no steps down.
Jordan then attempted to jump between the car park and the wall alongside it – a gap of some two metres (about 6ft), the inquest was told.
Jordan fell two storeys to the ground, estimated between 10ft and 15ft although the family expressed concern that this had never been measured exactly.
The boy could not recall the exact conversation between himself and Jordan before the 15-year-old fell.
But in his statement, read out by coroner’s officer Tony Beldam, he said: “He was fearless and adventurous. He wasn’t the free-running type but he was always the one doing tricks.”
Mr Beldam presented evidence to Jordan’s “large and loving family” who attended the inquest.
He and coroner Veronica Hamilton-Deeley both spoke about the number of people who came to help Jordan at the scene of his fall including first aiders from the nearby David Lloyd Gym.
The inquest was told that the first 999 call was made at 5.31pm and that an ambulance was on the scene five minutes later.
The coroner told Jordan’s family: “It is a great tribute to the people around the Marina that so many people were there, talking to him, comforting him, being there for him.”
The inquest heard that the ambulance had noted in its clinical record – paperwork which is completed for every patient – that Jordan’s eyes were open but he was unable to speak.
Jordan was progressively losing consciousness, it was deemed, as the ambulance responders repeatedly measured his eye movement, motor skills and verbal response using a system called the Glasgow Coma Scale.
Mr Beldam said that, while an average person would be at 15 on the scale, for Jordan “it’s reducing all the time” – at 11 when the ambulance arrived and, 15 minutes later, down to 10.
At 6pm a helicopter landed with critical care paramedics and doctors who established that Jordan had a severe head injury.
But it was decided that the best course of action would be to move Jordan by land to St George’s Hospital in London.
It took an hour and 14 minutes. Once there, Jordan was admitted to the paediatric intensive care unit.
A CT scan indicated that Jordan had several skull fractures which were causing bleeding in his brain.
Jordan was intubated and kept in intensive care, with doctors trying to monitor the pressure on his brain and hoping that he might be able to survive.
However, the coroner said that “ultimately he didn’t show any improvement”.
After an MRI scan was carried it, it was revealed that “sadly there was extensive damage”.
The coroner said that Jordan’s family and the hospital “planned to move him to a hospice (in West Sussex) on Good Friday but in the morning he deteriorated quickly”.
She said: “He was given oxygen and all the support that he could be given to make him comfortable but, in spite of everything, he died.”
The coroner concluded the inquest by offering her condolences to the family and reiterating Jordan’s friends’ characterisation of him as “fearless and adventurous”.
She said: “It gives me huge sorrow to have to offer all of you (here) and all his friends and family my condolences to such an extraordinary young man on the threshold of his life.”