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Last Updated: Wednesday, 30 June, 2004, 15:16 GMT 16:16 UK
'Topple test' for grave problem
Toppling headstones have killed three people in five years
Headstones in North Lincolnshire cemeteries are to be subjected to a "topple test" to assess their safety.

Three people have died in the UK since 1999 after headstones fell on them and several injured, Health and Safety Executive figures show.

North Lincolnshire Council says all 7,000 memorials in its nine cemeteries will be checked and if any fail the test they will be laid down.

The test involves using a machine to exert pressure on the headstones.

'Topple tester'

The council will then contact the owners of problem headstones and work with them to make their memorials safer.

Councillor Jean Bromby said the testing will take some time but the authority was determined to protect people from potential injury.

"We mustn't become complacent. We have a duty to ensure people's safety," she said.

"We already carry out regular testing of memorials and we will continue to do so.

"What we are trying to do is take preventative measures rather than wait until someone is seriously injured or killed."

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