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Hallowe’en HORROR

PUBLISHED: 12:58 30 October 2008 | UPDATED: 10:13 23 August 2010

Gravesend
16-10-08
Broadditch Farm
Spooky Castle
Michael Weeks & Alice Brammell

Gravesend 16-10-08 Broadditch Farm Spooky Castle Michael Weeks & Alice Brammell

A 15-YEAR-OLD girl drank petrol given to her in a plastic water bottle by stewards after being dragged injured from a horrifying Halloween attraction. Hannah Gamble, of Dover Road, Northfleet suffered black eyes and cut face as she was knocked to the gro

Gravesend
27-10-08
Hannah Gamble 15, got injured at the Halloween Spooky event at Broadditch farm and was then given petrol in a water bottle to drink

A 15-YEAR-OLD girl drank petrol given to her in a plastic water bottle by stewards after being dragged injured from a horrifying Halloween attraction.

Hannah Gamble, of Dover Road, Northfleet suffered black eyes and cut face as she was knocked to the ground in a maze at the Broadditch Farm shop, Manor Farm, Southfleet.

She was later taken to Darent Valley hospital, suffering palpitations and complaining of a burning feeling in her mouth as paramedics sought advice from experts

Hundreds of youngsters visited the attraction's opening night at the working farm in New Barn Road, Southfleet on Friday about 7.30pm.

But after entering the pitch black Maze of Madness panic followed as visitors ran from a chainsaw wielding actor.

It took 20 minutes for friends to drag her to safety when a steward gave her a still PERFECTLY CLEAR water bottle containing petrol to drink.

The Northfleet School for Girls pupil said: "I was covered in blood when my friends managed to get my out. I was terrified.

"Blood was over my face and running down my neck but no-one stopped to help inside the maze. The actor carried on scaring us and chasing people. I fell over and hit my face on something pretty hard and was being trampled on. It was only my friends that got me out.

"Outside I was in pain and short of breath, with blood in my throat and mouth I asked for water."

Health and Safety officers from Dartford Borough Council are now probing the incident at the working farm, following a complaint from the victim's father and a report logged by farm owner John Harris.

Hannah was at the attraction with seven friends, and Heather and Nigel West, the parents of a friend when she was given the bottle as she recovered from the ordeal.

The teenager said: "I took a gulp, swallowing some and then just spitting it out.

"I did not know what was going on and was panicking saying 'it's not water, it's not water, what have they given me'."

Her friend's parent, Mrs West added: "I could smell petrol in the air but had no idea it was in the water bottle. The man who gave her the drink was distraught. He just grabbed a bottle of water and broke the seal but it had been filled with petrol.

Her mouth was burning and Hannah was panicking so security called the ambulance."

Her furious father-of-four, Daniel Gamble, 40, raced to the scene after distraught friends called him and has since complained to the Health and Safety Executive. He is calling for a full investigation.

Mr Gamble said: "To store petrol in this way is irresponsible and dangerous. What if she had drunk more or it was given to a younger child. If this got in to the wrong hands and someone was smoking it could have been horrific.

"As for the maze, 20 minutes to get out. No-one stopped to help despite her begging for actors(staff) to show her the way out. It is a complete disgrace."

John Harris, who runs Broadditch Farm with his father has since apologised, offered to reimburse the £150 the group spent on the attraction and sent flowers.

He said: "We'd like to offer our sincere apologies to Hannah and her family. The incident was dealt with appropriately in the first instance by qualified first aiders.

"However, the circumstances that led to the events that followed are the subject of an investigation.

"The business is prepared to review its procedures, if necessary, for the future."

A Dartford council spokesperson said: "We have been informed of an incident at Broadditch farm shop on Friday by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the council's health and safety officers are working with the HSE to investigate."

michael.adkins@archant.co.uk

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