LATEST: The death of a special effects technician on the movie set of THE DARK KNIGHT was an accident, an inquest has ruled.
A jury at Monday's (03Nov08) two-day inquest at Woking Coroner's Court in Surrey, England heard that Conway Wickliffe lost his life during a test run for a scene in the latest Batman film, in which the Batmobile is blown up.
The 41-year-old father-of-two was leaning out of a car while operating a camera when the vehicle crashed on the test track at the QinetiQ site in Surrey in September 2007.
Wickliffe's partner, Dee Chase, is now urging big movie companies to hire health and safety officials to oversee every stunt in a bid to prevent further tragedies.
Chase says, "Warner Brothers (the studio behind The Dark Knight) are a huge multi-million dollar company - why are they cutting corners like this? These guys are under pressure because the director will say he wants something and they have to respond as quickly as possible. It is the culture of the industry and it needs to change."
According to the BBC, bosses at the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) may now bring a prosecution over the incident.
'Smalls Change (Meditations Upon Ageing)' arrives in April.
The two awards have made for a great 72nd birthday present for the country music icon.