Dolores O’Riordan's Alcohol-Related Cause of Death Revealed

By Beth Leipholtz 09/10/18

The Cranberries singer's body was found in a London hotel in January. 

Dolores O' Riordan
Photo via YouTube

The Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan had a blood alcohol level four times the legal driving limit at the time of her death, according to coroner’s inquest, AP News reports.

A police officer reported to the inquest at Westminster Coroner’s Court that on January 15, O’Riordan, 46, was found in a London hotel submerged in a bathtub in her pajamas. There was no note and no evidence of any self-harm. As such, the AP states, the inquest determined that O’Riordan’s death was accidental and caused by alcohol consumption. 

In Britain, inquests are usually held after a sudden, violent or unexplained death. The purpose, according to the AP, is to determine the facts of the circumstances surrounding the death. 

In O’Riordan’s room, authorities discovered five mini alcohol bottles as well as a bottle of champagne. In addition to O’Riordan’s high blood alcohol content, “therapeutic” amounts of prescription medications were also found in her body, the AP states. 

“There’s no evidence that this was anything other than an accident,” coroner Shirley Radcliffe stated.

Prior to her drowning, O’Riordan had reportedly struggled with her physical and mental health. The AP reported that in 2017, the band had to end their world tour early due to her back issues.

In interviews, she had also spoken about being sexually abused during her childhood, as well as struggling with depression and bipolar disorder. 

After the iconic singer's death, Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar stated that “for anyone who grew up in Ireland in the 1990s, Dolores O’Riordan was the voice of a generation.”

After the inquest, The Cranberries released a statement on Twitter. 

“Today we continue to struggle to come to terms with what happened,” it read. “Our heartfelt condolences go out to Dolores’ children and family and our thoughts are with them today. Dolores will live on eternally in her music. To see how much of a positive impact she had on people’s lives has been a source of great comfort to us. We’d like to say thank you to all of our fans for the outpouring of messages and continued support during this very difficult time.”

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Beth is a Minnesota girl who got sober at age 20. By day she is a website designer, and in her spare time she enjoys writing about recovery at, doing graphic design and spending time with her boyfriend and three dogs. Find Beth on LinkedInInstagram and Twitter.