Mums watch in horror as girl, 5, is killed in accident at Mile End children’s playpark


- Credit: Archant

Full investigations are under way over play equipment that crashed down in a children’s play park in London’s East End killing a five-year-old girl a day before her sixth birthday.

Royal London Hospital

Royal London Hospital - Credit: Archant

The child was rushed to the Royal London Hospital, but died shoetly after.

Mothers with their children had watched in horror when climbing equipment collapsed onto the child, named locally as Alexia Walenkaki, at the play area in Mile End Park.

The child’s mother, Vida Kwotuah, and another woman tried to keep little Alexia conscious while speaking to paramedics on a mobile phone on Friday afternoon.

“The pole fell down hit on back of head,” one eye-witness told the East London Advertiser. “My daughter gave the child mouth-to-mouth.

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“She was choking on her blood. My daughter dialled 999 and was speaking to paramedics before the ambulance arrived who told her to clear the blood from the throat and give her mouth-to-mouth.”

The eye-witness who asked not be named, a grandmother who regularly visits the park and often sees the family, said Alexia was one of four little girls balancing on wooden logs held up by poles when the logs suddenly crashed to the ground.

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“The children fell down, but seemed alright,” she added. “But as the little girl got up, one of the poles crashed down and hit her.”

An ambulance arrived at the playpark in Locksley Street, off Burdett Road, at around 5.30pm and found the child in cardiac arrest, then took her to hospital where she later died.

Alexia’s mother was about to leave the park with her child when the accident happened. They visited the playpark most days, sometimes with Alexia’s older brother Austin.

Alexia, who would have been six years old on Saturday, went to Stepney Greencoat Church of England Primary, where a special school assembly was held this-morning, many of the children in shock.

The family were regular churchgoers at St Dunstan’s in Stepney High Street. The congregation said prayers for the family at yesterday’s weekly service when Alexia’s sad death was announced by the vicar.

Now a full investigation is being carried out by the Health & Safety Executive and Metropolitan Police into the circumstances and will be looking at the equipment installed at the playpark run by Tower Hamlets Council.

Neither Alexia’s school nor the council would comment today. A Town Hall spokesman said: “The council would like to extend its deepest sympathies to the family.”

A hospital post mortem is being held today. An inquest is to be held at a date to be set.

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