A pensioner who died after she fell backwards down a flight of steps and landed on her head may have had an epileptic seizure, in inquest heard.
Jean Lord, 71, fell from the top of eight concrete stairs outside her first-floor home in Grange Road, Bracebridge Heath.
Simon Coulson had been checking for his next fare when he looked up and saw Ms Lord, who was carrying a handbag and a shopping bag and using a walking stick, fall.
In a statement, he said: “She was actually tumbling backwards down the stairs. She landed at the bottom of the steps on her head.
“There was nobody else around at the time and I cannot see or think of any reason why she should fall backwards down those steps.”
Mr Coulson rushed to Ms Lord but she was unresponsive and he called emergency services.
He said paramedics arrived “very quickly”.
Ms Lord was taken to Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham where a scan showed her to have suffered skull fractures and a “devastating and severe brain injury”.
There was evidence of a possible epileptic seizure. Attempts to stabilise her condition had no effect and it was decided that her treatment should be switched to compassionate end of life care.
She died on April 14 last year, two days after the fall.
Mr Coulson had picked up Ms Lord from the White Hart Hotel in Bailgate at about 6.45pm and described her as a “chatty, pleasant lady”. He could not smell alcohol on her.
Her GP said she had a history of epilepsy and was prone to seizures.
In a written statement, he said: “She was a vulnerable lady who tried her best to cope.
"I thought her accommodation was not suitable for her but she was quite adamant that she would not go into care home and wanted to stay in her flat with the help of carers.”
Senior coroner for Lincolnshire, Tim Brennand , said: “This is a very sad case indeed.
"A lady with pre-existing epileptic condition attempting to retain her dignity and her independence.”
He said the problem he had was deciding whether there was an accidental fall or a potential epileptic seizure.
Given the evidence, he gave a narrative conclusion: “Jean Lord died as a consequence of injuries sustained in a fall as a consequence of a presumed epileptic seizure.”