Farm Business Fined £100,000+ After Tragic Cow Attack Resulting in Teacher’s Death

Tragic Cow Attack

Newcastle Crown Court has ruled that a farm business must pay over £100,000 after an escaped cow fatally injured primary school teacher Marian Clode during an Easter break in Northumberland in 2016.

The distressing incident occurred while she was on a walk with her family, leaving her with severe spinal injuries that led to her death three days later.

Legal Proceedings

JM Nixon and Son, the owners of Swinhoe Farm, faced charges of failing to ensure safety regarding non-employees, exposing them to risks from cattle movement. The court fined the firm £72,500 and mandated an additional £34,700 payment for costs, along with a victim surcharge.

Incident Details

The judge recounted the events, emphasizing the necessity for herdsmen to meticulously plan and review livestock movement despite their usually docile nature.

Alastair Nixon, the farmer, witnessed his herd escaping containment while moving from winter to summer grazing. The cows approached Mrs. Clode’s family at high speed, resulting in a tragic attack.

Outcome and Changes in Practices

Following the incident, the farm has modified its cattle movement procedures, ensuring no further incidents have occurred since Mrs. Clode’s tragic demise.

Despite the long-standing history of the Nixon family’s ownership of the farm and no prior safety concerns, the court emphasized the need for stringent safety measures when managing livestock movements.

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