03/12/2014 06:25 GMT | Updated 20/05/2015 06:12 BST

Six-Week-Old Baby Died After Parents Brought Him Into Their Bed After A Night Out


A coroner has warned of the dangers of 'co-sleeping and parental alcohol consumption' after a six-week-old baby died in his parents' bed.

Paul Pearson, 24, and 22-year-old Emily Lambert returned from a night out at 3.30am on May 31.

They put their son Noah in a Moses basket next to their bed but when he started crying at 5am, Mr Pearson took him from the basket, fed him and carried him into their bed until he went back to sleep.

But four hours later, Mr Pearson woke up to find his son lying unconscious, with blood coming from his nose.

Mr Pearson called an ambulance, but Noah was pronounced dead at Bradford Royal Hospital.

Bradford Coroners' Court heard Noah died from Sudden Infant Death syndrome (SIDs) after being deprived of oxygen.

But the coroner said a contributory factor in Noah's death was 'co-sleeping and parental alcohol consumption', as well as over-heating.

After the inquest, Miss Lambert's father Mervyn Lambert called for a national campaign to raise awareness for babies in bed and alcohol consumption.

He said: "I have brought up three children and they have been perfectly healthy and all have shared our bed.

"It is terrible what has happened obviously and my daughter and her partner are heartbroken as are we all.

"I would like to see a national NHS campaign to raise awareness for babies in bed and alcohol consumption."

Miss Lambert said she'd had just one glass of wine on the tragic night.

She said: "We're not big drinkers and we don't drink a lot.

"The last time we went out was on holiday - a year before I had the baby. We just wanted to go out for a bit - I only had a glass of wine."

Consultant paediatrician Dr Eduardo Moya told the court the incident had been a 'tragedy' at the no-one had been 'at fault'.

He said tests had shown there were no abnormalities in the baby's organs, which pointed towards Sudden Unexpected Death syndrome.

But the doctor also said that the parents' decision to co-sleep with their baby and having consumed alcohol might have contributed to their baby's death.

He said: "This was a tragedy and there is nobody as fault but I believe it is important to know the etymology of SIDS.

"These are contributory factors because we don't know the ultimate cause of SIDS. I pass my condolences on to the family.

"It was clear to me when I went to see them that nobody did anything wrong or deliberate. It was an unfortunate tragedy."

Dr Moya had told the hearing that there had been a number of contributing factors to Noah's death.

He said: "The not deliberate and unfortunate set of circumstances is well-documented - bed sharing with parents combined with alcohol consumption.

"Furthermore one or both parents did smoke and that could be a contributory factor as that baby had a rhino viral infection.

"There are a series of risk factors that increase the likelihood of having SIDS. One reason bed sharing is considered dangerous is that one parents could roll on to the infant in the middle of the night.

"I think the most dominant would be bed sharing with two adults.

"Next would be alcohol consumption. Alcohol enhances fatigue through the night and it could reduce the level of mental awareness in the parents."

He also said that over-heating is another factor that increases the chance of a baby dying of SIDS, before adding: "In my personal view it should be recorded as SIDS with co-sleeping and alcohol consumption.

"The reason I say this is that this is important. If we know how many cases there are with enhanced risk factors and what they are, this can help with promoting a campaign for safe infant care."

Assistant Coroner Dominic Bell recorded a narrative verdict, describing it as a 'tragic day' for the family.

He said: "SIDS is considered applicable and it is likely that there are a number of contributory factors of the circumstances that have been described.

"In order of contribution - bed sharing, parental alcohol consumption, rhino virus, smoking and over-heating. This is a tragic day for the family."

Advice for parents from The Lullaby Trust


Always place your baby on their back to sleep.

Don't smoke during pregnancy and after birth.

Place your baby to sleep in a separate cot or Moses basket in the same room as you for the first six months.

Use a firm, flat, waterproof mattress in good condition.


Never sleep on a sofa or in an armchair with your baby.

Don't sleep in the same bed as your baby if you smoke, drink or take drugs or are extremely tired, if your baby was born prematurely or was of low birth-weight.

Avoid letting your baby get too hot.

Don't cover your baby's face or head while sleeping or use loose bedding, such as quilts, blankets, pillows or cot bumpers.

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