The High Court has awarded a woman €500,000 compensation for a waitress hand injury after finding jugs used in a hotel breakfast bar were unfit for purpose.
Sophie Caillaud (42) claimed compensation for a waitress hand injury after suffering a deep cut in her thumb when a glass jug she was filling at the Lough Rynn Hotel in Mohill, County Leitrim shattered in her hand.
Sophie underwent surgery to repair the soft damage tissue in her thumb but, due to the thumb failing to regain its strength, Sophie has been unable to return to waitressing since her accident – the injury also affecting her ability to perform day-to-day activities.
After seeking legal advice, Sophie claimed compensation for a waitress hand injury against the hotel and the two companies that manufactured and supplied the glass jugs to the hotel – Bunzl Outsourcing Ltd and Utopia Tableware Ltd.
The defendants contested the claim for compensation for a waitress hand injury due to the amount that was being requested and because, it was argued, that Sophie had contributed to the cause of her accident through her own negligence.
As the claim could not be resolved through the Injuries Board process or through negotiation, the case went to the High Court, where it was heard by Mr Justice Kevin Cross. At the hearing, Judge Cross was told that staff members had previously reported injuries due to the glass jugs shattering.
Judge Cross also heard testimony from an expert, who explained that the rapid cooling and heating of the jugs when used in a dishwasher weakened the joint between the jug´s thick handle and its thinner body. The expert concluded that the jugs were unfit for purpose.
After hearing evidence from Sophie, the judge also dismissed the allegations of contributory negligence and suggestions that Sophie was exaggerating her injuries. Commenting he found Sophie to be “entirely genuine”, Judge Cross awarded her €500,000 compensation for a waitress hand injury.
A Dublin bar injury compensation claim has been settled at the High Court in favour of a woman who dislocated her thumb in a slip and fall accident.
On May 28th 2011, Sharon Kelly (44) from County Offaly attended a thirtieth birthday party at the Arc Café Bar on the Fonthill Road in Dublin. Shortly after midnight, Sharon crossed the wooden floor in the lobby area to go to the bathroom, slipped on some liquid spilt on the floor and dislocated her thumb as she fell.
In pain from her injury – which has left her with a loss of sensation in the tip of her thumb and a reduced pinch grip – Sharon sought legal advice and made a Dublin bar injury compensation claim against Lackabeg Limited trading as the Arc Café Bar, alleging that there had been a failure to monitor the floor surfaces and take corrective action when a risk of injury was identified.
Lackabeg Limited denied liability for Sharon´s injury, and contested the Dublin bar injury compensation claim on the grounds that the bar had a comprehensive cleaning system in place. The owners of the bar alleged that Sharon had been drinking at the party for more than five hours and was wearing four-inch heels at the time of her accident.
With liability contested, the Injuries Board issued Sharon with an authorisation to pursue her Dublin bar injury compensation claim in court. Consequently, the case was heard by Mr Justice Anthony Barr at the High Court.
During the hearing, Judge Barr was told that the liquid on the floor could either have been caused by a patron spilling their drink or water being walked out from the ladies toilet. The judge accepted the evidence of two other women that the toilets in the public bar had been in poor condition that night and complaints were made to bar staff.
The judge also reviewed CCTV footage of Sharon´s slip and fall accident, and heard that the bar had been particularly busy that evening due to a two-for-one drinks promotion to promote a televised Champions League football match. The judge said he was satisfied that there was liquid on the wooden floor where Sharon slipped and fell.
Awarding Sharon €90,000 in settlement of her Dublin bar injury compensation claim, Judge Barr said: “People cannot be expected to look at the floor when walking across a bar. She was entitled to expect that the floor was dry and it was safe for her to walk across it.”
A Circuit Court judge has approved a settlement of compensation for a broken wrist on holiday in favour of a young girl who was hurt in an accident in Spain.
In June 2014, the Budhe family from Clondalkin in Dublin were enjoying a holiday on the Costa del Sol in Spain. While the family were sitting beside the pool, six-year-old Sophia went to get a drink from the poolside drinks dispenser.
As she had seen other children use a chair to reach the drinks dispenser, Sophia also climbed onto the chair. However, the chair was wet from previous use, and Sophia slipped and fell – landing on her outstretched left wrist.
Sophia´s wrist began to swell the following day, and she was taken to the Accident and Emergency department of a local hospital in Benalmadena, where an X-ray was taken and a soft cast was applied to her wrist.
On the family´s return to Dublin, Sophia attended the Tallaght Hospital where a further X-ray was taken. The soft cast was subsequently replaced with an above-the-elbow plaster back slab, which Sophia was required to wear for several weeks.
Through her father Amar, Sophia claimed compensation for a broken wrist on holiday against the travel agent through which the holiday was booked – Linevana Ltd, of Lower Liffey St, Dublin – and also the tour operator – TUI UK & Ireland.
In the claim it was alleged that both Linevana and TUI UK & Ireland were negligent for not supplying a suitable and safe means for children to reach the drinks dispenser. Both defendants admitted their liability for Sophia´s injuries and a €14,000 settlement of compensation for a broken wrist on holiday was agreed.
Because the claim for compensation for a broken wrist on holiday had been made on behalf of a child, the settlement had to be approved by a judge to ensure it was in Sophia´s best interests. Consequently, at the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke was told the circumstances of Sophia´s accident and the settlement that had been agreed.
Judge Groarke approved the settlement after hearing that Sophia had made a full recovery. The funds will now be paid into court, where they will be managed in an interest-yielding account until Sophia becomes a legal adult at age eighteen.
A woman has been awarded injury compensation for a nightclub accident at the Abberley Court Hotel in Dublin, but only after a judge ruled she must take 20% responsibility for her injury.
Sixty-four year old Rita Walsh from Tallaght in Dublin made her claim for nightclub accident compensation after tripping over a poorly-lit step as she made her way to the bathroom of the Level 4 Nightclub at the Abberley Court Hotel just as it was closing at 2:00am on the morning of April 4th 2010.
Rita injured her shoulder when she fell and, after seeking legal advice made a claim for injury compensation for a nightclub accident – alleging in her action against the Abberley Court Hotel that the management of the nightclub turned out all the lights as soon as the DJ stopped playing music, and that the step was impossible to see in the “pitch black”.
The Abberley Court Hotel denied its liability for Rita´s shoulder injury, and said that the lights had all been turned on as patrons left that evening. However, a forensic engineer giving evidence at court testified that the overall lighting was inadequate to clearly identify the step in question during normal club use, and that a recessed light in the step only made the step visible in the direction away from which Rita was approaching.
Judge Alan Mahon ruled that on the basis of the forensic engineer´s evidence, Rita was entitled to injury compensation for the nightclub accident; however he commented that he neither agreed with Rita´s allegations that the nightclub was “pitch black” nor that the management of the Abberley Court Hotel turned all the lights on as patrons left the club – saying it was most likely that management had only illuminated the nightclub after Rita´s accident.
The judge also told Rita that she must take some of the responsibility for her trip and fall injury, as she had admitted to drinking alcohol with her daughters prior to the accident. He assigned her 20% contributory negligence and reduced her injury compensation for a nightclub accident from €22,000 to €17,600.
A young man, who suffered serious injuries when diving into the shallow end of a swimming pool while on a family vacation in Spain, has settled his claim for holiday swimming pool injury compensation out of court.
Robert O’Byrne (25) from Dublin was left quadriplegic and confined to a wheelchair following his accident in the Spanish resort of Torremolinos in 2005. Robert, who was aged just seventeen years at the time, dived into the shallow end of a hotel pool at night after having consumed alcohol during the day.
In June 2008, Robert initiated a claim for holiday swimming pool injury against Michael Stein Travel Ltd of Dublin – the travel agent through who the holiday had been booked – alleging negligence, breach of duty and breach of contract.
Michael Stein Travel contested the claim, and sought leave to issue a third party notice against Robert´s parents – alleging that they were in breach of their duty of care by allowing their son to drink alcohol contrary to the laws of Ireland and Spain, and by failing to supervise Robert´s actions which led to him diving into the shallow end of the swimming pool and sustaining his terrible injuries.
Robert´s parents argued that, at the age of seventeen, their son was old enough not to be under the continuous supervision of his parents and it was unreasonable to expect otherwise. They also produced evidence to show that alcohol was “sold indiscriminately” to young people by the bars within the hotel complex.
In December 2012, the Supreme Court dismissed Michael Stein Travel´s application to have Robert´s parents added to the case as defendants, and the claim for holiday swimming pool injury compensation was scheduled to be heard in the High Court.
However, when the case was called to be heard before Mr Justice Sean Ryan, the judge was told that the claim had been settled “on specific terms”. Details of the out of court settlement of compensation for a holiday swimming pool injury are to remain confidential.
A woman, whose holiday in Italy was ruined when a sun longer collapse beneath her has been awarded 38,000 Euros in compensation for holiday sun lounger accident at the Circuit Civil Court.
Mary Lee (74) from Navan, County Meath, was on a week´s holiday at the four-star Hotel Galeazzi in Brescia, when the sun lounger on which she was sitting collapsed beneath her – causing her to strike her head on the concrete floor beside the pool.
As Mary started to feel dizzy and disorientated, she was taken to the local hospital where she was diagnosed with a severe soft tissue injury to the back of her head and neck. Although Mary was prescribed strong painkillers, the pains in her arms, back and legs prevented her from leaving her hotel room for the remainder of the holiday.
Judge Jacqueline Linnane at the Circuit Civil Court heard that on her return to Navan, Mary consulted her family doctor and, despite being prescribed more painkillers, continued to experience pains which prevented her from pursuing a “normal” life.
After seeking legal advice, Mary made a claim for compensation for holiday sun lounger accident against the travel company through whom the holiday had been booked – The Travel Department of Fitzwilliam Square, Dublin.
The Travel Department denied liability for Mary´s injuries and sought to have the owners of the hotel brought into proceedings as third-party defendants. However Judge Linnane found against the travel agency and, although ruling that The Travel Department should be indemnified by the hotel for the settlement, awarded Mary 38,000 Euros compensation for holiday sun lounger accident.
Glen Turner of Navan, County Meath has won €100,000 damages in settlement of a High Court case against the Ardboyne Hotel, Navan, County Meath for alleged assault by doormen at a nightclub at the hotel.
Mister Turner has claimed that a pre-existing epilepsy condition has “significantly worsened” since he was allegedly assaulted by two doormen. The incident occurred in September 2001.
The High Court case was taken against Quinn Hotels Ltd, with registered offices at Hotel Kilmore, Dublin Road, County Cavan, which operates the Ardboyne’s Hotel. The full details of the settlement were not revealed in court, although legal council for Mr Turner told Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O’Neill that the terms included a payment of €100,000.
Joan Noone has been awarded €42,000 in damages against the Setanta House Hotel, Celbridge, County Kildare, after her reception was disrupted by a collapsed ceiling. Luckily there were no serious injuries.
Ms. Noone from Maynooth, County Kildare, was very upset by the incident and cancelled her honeymoon. She was in shock for some days after the accident and claimed she suffered post traumatic stress afterwards.
The case was heard by Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O’Neill, who assessed for damages as the hotel admitted liability.
The groom, Michael Noone, and five wedding guests, are also due to have compensation cases heard soon. It is not known how many of the 129 wedding guests have started compensation proceedings against the hotel.