Man who lived in van took ‘massive overdose’

An inquest into his death was held at Avon Coroner's Court in Flax Bourton.

An inquest into his death was held at Avon Coroner's Court in Flax Bourton. - Credit: Archant

A man died of a ‘massive overdose’ after ingesting a number of tablets in an attempt to end his life.

Peter Blissett, aged 69, who lived in his van, was found acting confused and disorientated at a petrol station in North Somerset on January 6.

At an inquest into his death on Thursday, the court heard how police and paramedics were called out to help Mr Blisset who told them he had taken an overdose over the course of three days in a suicide attempt.

Mr Blissett was jaundiced, had a swollen tongue and an abnormal electrocardiogram (ECG) reading, so the ambulance crew took him to Weston General Hospital for further assessment.

The court heard how Mr Blissett had a history of alcohol abuse and doctors diagnosed him with acute liver failure, secondary to an overdose, when he arrived at the hospital.

Mr Blissett told nurses he lived on his own in his van and moved from place to place.

Doctors discussed his treatment with liver specialists in Birmingham who confirmed he was not suitable for a transplant.

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The court heard how Mr Blissett’s condition deteriorated and he was admitted to the intensive care unit, where he suffered a cardiac arrest on January 11.

A post mortem examination was carried out by Dr Demetris Poyiatzis, which confirmed Mr Blissett died from a gastrointestinal haemorrhage caused by an overdose and deranged liver function.

At an inquest into his death at Avon Coroner’s Court in Flax Bourton, assistant coroner Terence Moore said: “During his time in hospital, he (Mr Blissett) disclosed he had taken tablets during the previous three days and also told doctors this was an intended suicide by staggered overdose.

“He became confused and disorientated due to a deranged liver function, and, during the post mortem, he was found to have a gastrointestinal haemorrhage.

“Dr Poyiatzis puts this down to an overdose and deranged liver function.

“Accepting this cause of death, and the history, it appears Mr Blissett had taken a massive overdose during the two to three days prior to his admission to hospital as a staggered suicide attempt.

“There is no evidence it was anything other than self administered for the purpose of ending his own life.

“I’m satisfied it was a suicide, and that will be my conclusion.”