A FATHER sat on a burning couch after placing a heater on it, a Huddersfield inquest was told.
David Pollard, 49, took an electric fire off the wall and put it on a leather sofa he had pushed against his living room door.
Mr Pollard was found by firefighters next to the window of his Batley Carr living room on April 25. Neighbours had raised the alarm and tried to rescue Mr Pollard but were unable to get in the room. They had seen smoke billowing from his flat.
Mr Pollard, who had drank the equivalent of six pints the night before his death, suffered 60 per cent burns and soot inhalation.
He died at Whiston Hospital, Merseyside, on April 28, after being transferred from Dewsbury Hospital.
His son Damien Pollard said his father had behaved strangely and aggressively the night before his death.
A neighbour said Mr Pollard, who had split with his partner, had seemed lonely and liked to drink.
West Yorkshire Fire Service investigator Steven Fealy said the settee would have required prolonged and intense heat to ignite it. He added the heat of the burning couch would have been like an “inferno”.
Coroner Mark Hinchliffe said Mr Pollard had died from multiple organ failure resulting from severe burns and inhalation.
He said: “I can’t say Mr Pollard’s death was deliberate suicide but I don’t think it was an accident either. This does not cast Mr Pollard in a bad light.”
He recorded a verdict of misadventure and praised Mr Pollard’s neighbours for their efforts.
Fire inspector Mr Fealy added: “Because Mr Pollard had a smoke alarm neighbours were alerted to the fire which resulted in a rescue. It is a shame his injuries resulted in death.”
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