The evidence at the inquest on the body of Henry Neal, who was found drowned in a creek near the city, showed that the deceased had been drinking heavily for some weeks, and that lie was dismissed from his employment in consequence. His son took him to the hospital, as he was on the verge of delirium trcmens. but he was refused admission, as the hospital did not take such cases. He was, however, given some medicine, which he took, but during Thursday night he left his house, and the next day was found drowned in a small creek, with his face down, in some three inches of water. A verdict of "Found drowned' 1 was given, and that there was no evidence to show Low he got into the water. A rider was added calling the attention of the Government to tLe crying need that existed for the establishment of inebriate homes in the large centres of population in the colony. The foreman of the jury said : " Had the man been admitted to the hospital and attended, to it would probably have saved his life. He was simply turned out on the road by the hospital authorities, and went to his death."
The Taranaki Herald's correspondent writes that a Maori named Sydney Hoekau was drowned on Friday afternoon at Cape Egmont. A party of four Maoris wcie fishing in a canoe when Hoekau, who was steering, fell overboard. The canoe tilled and capsized, but the others reached the shore safely.
A man and a woman narrowly escaped a terrible death on Saturday morning. About 3 o'clock, when it was yet dark, a man, in company with Reid and Gray's night watchman, went down to a yard in Crawford street to take away two traction engines, which were coupled together. Steam was got up, and everything being .prepared the driver mounted" the engine, and remarked to the watchman that be would make a start. The watchman went on with a lantern, and in the moving light fancied he saw a boot sticking out from underneath the front engine. He swung his lantern down, and immediately saw that someone was lying undernsath. He shouted out to the driver just a3 the latter had his hand on the lc\ er preparatory to moving, and the diner, coming down and making an inspection with the other, found a man and a woman underneath the huge machine. Of course they immedia f ely proceeded to get the pair out of their dangerous position, and when they were cot clear, after no little trouble, it was manifest that the two had been drinking ; in fact, they were then in a state of intoxication. Had not the watchman seen them there is not the slightest doubt that bouh engines would have paosed over their bodies.
A visitor to Rotorua. John Darrach, hailing from Waipu. whilst bathing m the lobster baths, walked into a dangerous hole and was drowned, beiner unable to swim. Some Maori 3 eventually recovered the body. Two elderly ladies, Mrs Duncan and Mrs Eeatty, dropped dead from heart disease at TvVtport on the 3L=t ult.
Thomas Marshall, aged 17 years, was drowned in the Waikiwi Cieek, Southland, on the 31pt ult. He could only swin a little, and was seized with cramp The body v, ;n recovered in 20 minutes, but life was extinct.
The Grey River Argus says that a Chinaman, who hu» besn working on. fch.B Grey Cou-
solidated claim for some time past, committed suicide by hang-ing himself to the rafter of his hut on December 22. Another Chinaman, upon taking him his usual provisions, found him hanging dead. At the inquest a verdict was returned that he hanged himself while of unsound mind.
A peculiar accident occurred near Bottle Lake, Canterbury. A man named Neils Rasmus Johansen had gone rabbit shooting for the day, and taken his dog. Ue was &u(.ee<->3-ful in bringing down a rabbit, and bent o\er to look at it, while the dog evinced a similar curiosity. Johansen was still holding his gun, one barrel of which was loaded, and the dog's faculty for investigation led him to examine this. Evidently he contrived to put his foot upon the trigger, for the gun w"ent off, and the charge passed through the upper part of the man's arm, smashing and splintering- the bone in its passage. He contrived to wind part of his shirt about the wound, and staggered to Mr Blake's hou=e, at New Brighton. Mr Blake brought him to the hospital, where he was attended to by Dr Hall. It was found that a conpiderable hemorrhage had set in, and that the wound itself was of a fpirly serious nature.
Our Waikouaiti correspondent writes: — A young man named William Fox, son of Mr W. H. Fox, of King street, Dunedin, who arrived here by the nig-ht special on New Year's Morning, accident-ally shot himself through the hand with a pea rifle. He was taken to Palmerston,, where the wound was dressed by Dr Hislop, and then returned the same morning to Dunedin. In the first heat of the Mile Bicycle Race at Timaru, A. L. Finch's machine slipped, and the rider fell heavily, splintering his elbow and sustaining a compound commuted fracture of the left forearm. The doctors fear that he will have to loce Ins arm. At the collection made at the second day of ti.3 sports £23 was subscribed. The Caledonian Society pay all medical expenses. On Tuesday afternoon, as Mr John Watson, of Port Chalmers, was out boat-sailing, and when off Deborah Bay. a sudden squall struck his boat and capsized her. She wa3 quickly righted without any serious results. William Robertson, carpenter on the Ovalau, was drowned at Rewa. Fiji, whilst bathine on Christmas Day. From Wellington we learn of the drowning at Alfredton of two boys named Davis, both under 13 years of age. The auxiliary oil-engine three-masted schooner Toroa called in at Nelson on Thursday. She had been taking shelter at Astrolabe, and while there a sailor named P. Nolan i«as engaged scraping the mizzen-topmast, vben he fpll on to the deckhouse. He has b°?n admitted to the hospital, but the extent of his injuries cannot be determined yet. He is -iery badly knocked about.
A man, name unknown, aged about 50 years, supposed from the papers in his pocket to be A. A. Rutledge, of Riverton, was found dead in the police lock-up at Kurow on Thursday He had been only 10 days in the district. He was arrested the previous afternoon as being of unsound mind. He had been attended during the evening by Dr Stevens.
News has been received at Port Chalmers of the death by drowning of Captain Alexander M'Lennan o i November 20 in the Isle of Skye7 North of Scotland. It appears that he was out with the herring- fishing fleet. A good haul had been made, and the craft made for the harbour. The wind roee, and the boat being heavily laden foundered. Captain M'Lennan and a man named M'Kenzie were drowned, while two others on board were saved by a Barra boat. Much sympathy is felt for the mother (Mrs M'Lennan, now in her 81st year) and sister (Mrs James Johnson) of the deceased, who reside in Port Chalmers.
A young man named M'Kay, aged 24 years, who behaved in an eccentric manner for a week or two, disappeared from G-reymouth on Christmas Night (says the Argus), and from evidence to hand there is little doubt but what the unfortunate young fellow has committed suicide. The following morning it was found that his bed had r.e;er been slept in, and a boat which was nulled up on the shore of the lake had disappeared and was found swamp 'd on the rocks near the mouth of the Arnold River A search party who went out found M 'Kay's hat washed ashore.
A man named John Strachan Gavin, aged 55 years, a remittance man, died under somewhat peculiar circumstances at Kaikorai Valley on Thursday night. It appear? that he and Louis Williamson, with whom he lived, had been enjoying themselves pretty freely on the night in question, and the two retired together, and went to steep in the same bed. In the morning Williamson woke up and found him dead. He communicated the fact to the police, and the body was removed to the Salutation Hotel, where it now lies awaiting an inquest, which will be held to-day.
A lad ramed Taylor, son of an Imercargill resident, had a very narr.ow escape from death on New Year's Eie ( Fays the Southland Tinier), a pea rifle once more being the cause. It seems an older boy had been shooting at sparrows with ii pea rifle and had left the weapon loaded, and the younger boy, not knowinar it was =o, pointed at his brother and pulled the ttisjgor. with the result that the bullet entered the lad's s-ide about the region of the herKt. Dr Hogg thinks the bullet has probably be^n (lpflectcd upward and is under tue "-boulder blado. A sj.d coaq ai drow-tti&jg oscux£§d ia tks
upper harbour about half-past 4 o'clock on Saturday afternoon. William Proudfoot Watson! 20 years of age, a member of the Dunedin Amateur Boating Club, was bathing close to the club's shed (opposite the tongue wharf) with John Stalker and others. He was 10 yards from the staging, and some of his mates, who wore about 20 yards out, noticed him throw up his hands and dis-.ippear. Stalker, who was nearest to him. immediately dived to his assistance, and managed to get hold of him by one hand, but on account of the water being- rough and being a poor swimmer himself, he had to let go, otherwise he -w ould have got into difficulties. William Farquharson launched a boat, and, with other members of the club, used every effort "to rescue their comrade, but failed. Two hours later Henry Bowie and George Bnmpton succpeded in bringing the body to the siirface. Medical aid was summoned as a matter of course, and the body was handed over to the police, who conveyed it to the residence of the deceased's mother in Stafford street. Deceased was an indifferent swimmer, and it is thought he muft have been &»izpcl with cramp. He was an employee in the warehouse of Messrs Sargood, Son, and Ewen. Henry Hanson, an employee of the MasseyHarris Company, fell off his bicycle while riding to Portobello on Sunday and dislocated his shoulder. He was taken to the hospital, where he received surgical attention, after which he was able to leave for home.
A man named George Beicl, vliilp walking down the hill from Roslyn on Sunuay'afternoon, slipped and fell on the footpath -and injured his hip rather ba'Uy. He was conveyed to the hospital, where he was admitted as a patient.
A fatal accident occurred on Saturday on the Noonan road, a few miles from Hawern. Henry White, a cripp 7 od youth, was being driven to the Haw era Hospital, vhen the )ior-» bo!ted, and the cmipants of the trap MM r erp thrown violently to tV aroirid. White, aged 18, had his skull fractured and thig-h broken, death being instantaneous The youth's father on a man named Gilbert were also bacllv brui-ed.
John MaishaF, a rabbiter. was found drad in his hut en tbo Kawarau station on Monday. An inquest was to be held.
R c'iard B Gale, aged 11 years, was accidentally drowned in a ram at Kyeburn Digpnjs on Hundny. Tie was en his way to the Sunday school at the time.
A bug-gy accident, fortunately attended with no very serious remits, occurred on the BriffMon road on Sunday afternoon. The vehicle. whiHi was occup.ed by Mr C. Branson (of the Harp of Erin Hntel). his wife and family, wn= being driven by a young man named Piper, of Mr Jeflfs's stable, and w r as returning to town, when the reins got caught under the pole, and one of the horses in trying to free it«elf pulled the other one and the tiap over the embankment. All the occupant were thrown out and badly bruised, bpsides being more or less shaken, and Mr Branson, in addition., had two ribs broken.
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