MEMBERS of a heartbroken farming family have spoken of their grief after a 72-year-old family member was killed in a mystery accident.

Farm worker Paul Dakin, of Hellifield, was driving a four-wheel utility vehicle at Pan Beck Farm when it is thought it overturned and trapped him underneath.

Another farm worker is said to have raised the alarm but it is believed that Mr Dakin was dead by the time medical help arrived at the scene.

An investigation has been launched by the Health and Safety Executive. It could be months before its findings are released.

The Yorkshire Air Ambulance was rushed to the incident but did not land as it had arrived too late to be able to help.

Mr Dakin's nephew Andrew, who runs Pan Beck Farm, said that the family was "heartbroken and utterly devastated."

He told the Craven Herald: "It's been a horrible shock and it somehow makes it even worse that we have no idea how or why the accident happened. My uncle was a self-employed farm worker and he had worked here all his life. He lived at the farm. It's a real tragedy."

A spokesman for North Yorkshire Police said: “Officers attended a farm near Hellifield, shortly before 3pm on Monday 14 July 2014, following a report that a man had died following an incident involving a 'quad bike'.

“On arrival they found the body of a local man who was sadly pronounced dead at the scene.

“The man who died was Paul Dakin, who was aged 72 and from Hellifield.

“There are not believed to be any suspicious circumstances surrounding Mr Dakin’s death and no one else is being sought in connection with the incident.

“North Yorkshire Police are working with the Health and Safety Executive to establish the circumstances around the incident.”

A service of remembrance will take place at St Aidan's Church, Hellifield, on Tuesday at 12.45pm. Donations will go to the Yorkshire Air Ambulance.