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Saturday, February 18, 2017

Basnett family tragedy

Andrew and Anne Basnett

Three tragic deaths of the Basnett family shocked the small rural town of Gunning, near Canberra on Thursday.

Husband and wife Andrew 69 and his wife Anne 63 and Andrew's brother Richard 68, all died when they collapsed inside a concrete water tank filled with noxious fumes.

When Andrew was cleaning out the tank, he called out for help and collapsed and when his wife and brother rushed to his aid, they too were overcome and died.  Before Anne went inside the tank, she asked a neighbour to call emergency services, but they arrived too late.

Andrew was using a petrol pump which caused a build-up of noxious fumes inside the tank which was virutally covered over.

Andrew's brother Richard was visiting the couple when the accident occurred.

'They were great community people, Annie was involved in a theatrical group and Andy played gold with us each week' family friend Kim Turner said.

The couple were finalists in the Flock Ewe competition at Gunning show and their event has since been cancelled out of respect.

Yass Valley Council Mayor Rowena Abbey said 'They loved their farm, their friends and particularly their children and grandchildren.'

A brief will be prepared for the information of the Coroner.