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Homeless Man Involved in Bus Accident Awarded €2m Compensation

At the High Court €2m bus accident compensation settlement has been awarded to a homeless man who was left in a paralysed from the waist down.

The accident that occurred in Dublin during October 2014, left Michael Carroll, who had been homeless for 15 years at the time, in a paraplegic condition, requiring full-time care and confined to a wheelchair. Representing Mr Carroll in court, Richard Lyons SCinfrmed the judge that this horrific accident occurred as he (Mr Carroll) was about to board the bus and the doors closed and the bus drove away. At this point in time Mr Carroll fell under the bus and sustained catastrophic injuries.

Mr Carroll (59) with an address in Finglas, Dublin, had sued Dublin Bus over the accident on October 23, 2014 at a bus stop on James’s St/Thomas St, Dublin.

The plaintiff claimed that he was trying to board a bus when the doors shut and it drove off allegedly resulting in him fall beneath the bus. It was also alleged there was a failure to ensure it was safe to drive off from the bus stop when Mr Carroll was standing too near to the bus itself. Other claims included that there was a failure to stop the bus when Mr Carroll was falling against it as it drove away and that the bus was driven from the bus stop without adequate due care and attention or maintaining a proper lookout.

Dublin Bus refuted the allegations made and stated that the bus driver did not drive away from the bus stop when Mr Carroll was standing at its doors. They counter-alleged that the plaintiff had fallen after the bus had begun to move and the driver did not shut its doors as Mr Carroll was trying to board. They added that they believed the bus driver did come to a halt after noticing that Mr Carroll had fallen against the bus. Dublin Bus further claimed there was contributory negligence on the part of Mr Carroll who it alleged failed to take any or any adequate or reasonable care for his safety.

Mr Carroll could not remember the specific details of the accident. The Court was informed that he has a long record  of alcoholism and was found to be in an intoxicated state when the accident occurred. Due to this, the Judge was informed, liability was an issue in the case.

As a result the compensation claim had been settled by allocating 75% liability to Dublin Bus and 25% to Mr Carroll.

Approving the settlement Mr Justice Kevin Cross said it was a reasonable one.