x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 25 November 2017

British coroner rules accidental death in case of expat whose BMW plunged six floors from Abu Dhabi car park

Linda Al Selmie was killed in 2015 incident

An image of Linda La Selmie's BMW released by police in January 2015. The vehicle plunged from the sixth floor of an Abu Dhabi multi-storey car park. Courtesy: Security Media
An image of Linda La Selmie's BMW released by police in January 2015. The vehicle plunged from the sixth floor of an Abu Dhabi multi-storey car park. Courtesy: Security Media

A woman plunged six-storeys to her death after accidentally reversing her car off the roof of an Abu Dhabi multi-storey car park, a British coroner has ruled.

Linda Al Selmie appeared to have been reversing while parking her BMW when the incident happened.

The 51-year-old died from multiple injuries after the car landed near the entrance of the Sheikh Khalifa Energy Complex

An inquest at Crook Coroners Court was told Abu Dhabi Police received a call at 8am on January 25, 2015 reporting that a vehicle had fallen from the sixth floor while in reverse mode.

The UK's Northern Echo newspaper on Wednesday reported details of the case as they were heard by a coroner, who is tasked with issuing an official cause of death.

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Woman dies in six-storey car plunge in Abu Dhabi

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The hearing centred around the height of the metal barriers that her vehicle rolled through, although tests revealed they were built to withstand the appropriate pressures.

Mrs Al Selmie’s family disputed some of the facts in the case, including relating to the barriers, but said they accepted it was unlikely that any more information would come to light to explain exactly what had happened.

Officials at BMW said tests had shown there were no mechanical faults.

It was not stated where Mrs Al Selmie worked, but the court was told she grew up in Darlington in the north-east of England and later lived in Manchester before moving to Abu Dhabi with husband Wajhi Al Selmie, an Iraqi-born engineer.

Crispin Oliver, senior assistant coroner of County Durham and Darlington, told the family it had been difficult to get all the evidence he had hoped for to reach his conclusion.

He praised their hard work and determination.

Speaking after the hearing, Mrs Al Selmie’s sister, Marjorie Carney, said "we will never know what caused the car to go through the barrier,".

"She had a wonderful life," she added.