Autistic man drowned in boating lake while on a day trip from medical centre

September 14, 2012 | by | 0 Comments
Majid Akhtar

Majid Akhtar

Health chiefs have launched an investigation after an autistic man drowned while on a day trip from his medical centre to a boating lake.

Tragic Majid Akhtar, 28, was found floating face-down in the King’s Mill Reservoir, near Mansfield, Notts., on Monday afternoon.

Majid was with a group of patients from Springwood Day Centre, in Mapperley, Notts., which cares for people with learning difficulties and autism.

Nottingham City Council – which runs the centre – has now ordered an investigation into his death.

Yesterday Majid’s devastated brother, Abid Mahmood, said: “We don’t want this to happen again to someone else and we want families to be aware.

“Our main concern is we don’t know how or why he has passed away.

“The police have told us Majid was due to join other people from the centre on a boat trip on the reservoir, but refused to go on board.

“Another person from the group also said they did not want to go and so both instead went on a walk around the water, with a supervisor.”

King's Mill Reservoir in Nottinghamshire where Majid, 28, was found floating face-down

King’s Mill Reservoir in Nottinghamshire where Majid, 28, was found floating face-down

The family say they were told the person with the pair lost sight of Majid, who was then found unconscious in the reservoir a short time later at about 2pm.

Attempts were made to resuscitate him and he was taken to nearby King’s Mill Hospital, but pronounced dead.

Abid added: “Physically and emotionally we are devastated, we are grieving. If someone is ill it is not such a shock but he was fit and well and just passed away like that – it is heartbreaking.”

Majid, from Sneinton Dale, Notts., was buried on Wednesday after a family funeral.

Another of his brothers, Wajid Akhtar, 25, said Majid’s twin brother, Khalid, who attends a different centre, is struggling to come to terms with what has happened.

He said: “You can tell from Khalid’s body language that he knows something is wrong. The two of them would eat together and go out together.

“We still need answers. It’s a big shock. He was happy at the centre.”

Abid said the family were also grateful to two people who police said had helped pull Majid from the water and tried to resuscitate him.

He added: “Majid was no harm to anyone. It could be hard for him to communicate sometimes but he had the basics in life.

“He was active and full of joy and happiness. He loved food and going out.”

Nottingham City Council’s director of adult social services, Ian Curryer, said: “I extend my deepest sympathy to his family. We have asked the police to investigate and referred the matter to the Health and Safety Executive.

“We have begun an investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death but it is too early to comment further at this stage.”

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