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Dungeness power station worker Steven Tull died after co-workers found him hanged

By Sam Lennon

Nuclear power station staff battled to save a colleague who hanged himself in a store room.

Steven Tull was still alive when he was found at the decommissioning Dungeness A but died later in hospital, an inquest heard.

Detective Sergeant Matthew Smith told the hearing that Mr Tull, a precision engineer, had been found at a storage area called Fuel Store 8 at 1.50pm on December 8 last year.

The decommissioning Dungeness power station is where Steven Tull was found by co-workers.

The decommissioning Dungeness power station is where Steven Tull was found by co-workers.

DS Smith said: "He was found hanging by colleagues and cut down. Attempts were made to resuscitate him."

He told the hearing that at about 8.15am that morning Mr Tull was said to have been in an agitated state.

He said: "He was reported to have been flustered and frustrated. He said he had to stand over colleagues to tell them how to do their job. He was usually composed."

Mr Tull was taken to the Willam Harvey Hospital in Ashford but died three days later.

Pathologist Dr George Vittay said Mr Tull died of bronchopneumonia due to a brain injury from the hanging.

"He was well liked and respected by all his colleagues. Our thoughts remain with his family and friends at this difficult time" - Magnox spokesman

Doctors at the hospital said the prolonged suspension was highly likely to cause brain injury due to severe oxygen deprivation.

The inquest heard Mr Tull, 50, of Tutsham Way, Paddock Wood, had hung himself from a metal beam.

Police searched the store room to see if Mr Tull left a suicide note and did the same with his vehicle and office, although nothing was found.

Mr Tull had no history of mental health problems, the inquest at Folkestone Magistrates' Court heard, and his widow Melanie said he did not suffer from depression.

But there had been evidence of family problems, which were not discussed in open court.

Mrs Tull said that her husband had been particularly upset the weekend before, but he was a man who "kept to himself".

DS Smith said there had been an incident in the family that showed Mr Tull's state of mind and believed that he had taken his own life.

Rachel Redman, Central and South East Kent Coroner, formally concluded that it was suicide, saying: "This is a tragic case involving family circumstances. I believe beyond reasonable doubt that Mr Tull took his own life."

After the inquest, a spokesman for Dungeness A's owners Magnox said: "It was with great sadness that we learned of the death of Steve Tull. He was well liked and respected by all his colleagues.

"Our thoughts remain with his family and friends at this difficult time."

Dungeness A stopped providing power in 2006 but workers are still there demolishing buildings and removing materials as part of the long process of decommissioning.

If you would like confidential support about an emotional issue, contact Samaritans for free on 116 123.

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