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Travelator Fall Injury Compensation Award of €15k for 83-Year-Old Man

Posted: October 11th, 2018

€15,000 in travelator injury compensation has been awarded to a man (83) who was injured in a fall when his shopping trolley jammed.

In the Circuit Civil Court Judge Sarah Berkeley was told that John Ansell of Listrolin, Mullinavat, Co Kilkenny was on a travelator at the Showgrounds Shopping Centre in Clonmel, Co Tipperary when he fell backwards, injuring his neck and shoulder and cutting his left hand.

Mr Ansell, told the Judge that he had taken a trolley from the Iceland Store. When he was finished paying for his groceries he decided to use the moving walkway to make his way to the second-level car park. When he was about to step off of the travelator with the trolley it jammed. He (Mr Ansell) tried unsuccessfully free it while the walkway kept moving. Other shoppers helped him to release the trolley but it skewed sideways suddenly and threw him back.

Mr Ansell took the shopping centre injury compensation action against two receivers who control the assets of MK 1 Property Investments, the owners of Iceland and Ennis Lifts.

Judge Berkeley was presented with evidence from four experts who attempted to apportion liability for the condition of the moving walkway/travelator and the Iceland trolley used by Mr Ansell.

Judge Berkeley pointed to the evidence that Mr Ansell did not experience any issues with the shopping trolley until he was stepping off the travelator. She added that Mr Ansell was completely blameless for the accident. The judge also referred to the testimony of Mr Ansell’s wife, Karen, that the shopping centre manager had informed her that a similar accident had occurred just one week previous to her husband’s fall. Due to this the judge deemed Mr Ansell’s accident as foreseeable and criticised the failure of the shopping centre management to take action following the previous accident.

As Ennis Lifts had fulfilled the obligations of their maintenance contract the judge awarded the €15,000 travelator injury compensation award jointly against the two receivers and the owners of Iceland.

Supermarket Injury Claim Settled

Posted: November 20th, 2016

A Tesco customer, who sustained a fracture to her knee after tripping in her local branch, has been awarded a five-figure settlement of compensation.

The woman, who has remained anonymous throughout proceedings though is known to be a thirty-two-year-old nurse from Dublin, sustained the injury in January 2014. Upon visiting her local Tesco Metro, the woman tripped over a six-pack of beer that had been left aside by a customer waiting in a queue.

An ambulance was called to the scene and the woman was transported to St James’ Hospital, where her leg was x-rayed. The scan revealed that she had fractured her knee, and the woman had to have two surgeries and over two years of physiotherapy to regain use of the leg. The same knee had been injured years earlier and had already undergone reconstructive surgery.

The woman made a claim for personal injury compensation through the Injuries Board Ireland, and after the supermarket denied permission for an assessment of compensation to be conducted at the branch, the Board issued the victim with authorisation to pursue the claim through the courts. Earlier this month the liability hearing was held at the Circuit Civil Court.

Mr Justice Raymond Groarke oversaw proceedings at the hearing. He was informed that Tesco was denying liability for the accident as they believed that the victim was negligent in her actions by tripping over the vibrantly-packaged beer. Tesco’s representatives argued that the staff at the branch could not have done anything to prevent her fall.

The victim’s representatives, however, argued that because of the layout of the shop, the woman was left with no choice but to walk through the queue of people waiting to use the self-checkouts. The judge commented that this disorganised system contributed to the accident, noting that if the “customer traffic” was better managed the accident could have been prevented.
Judge Groarke commented that the nature of the fracture was particularly bad as it was still troubling the claimant nearly three years later. The Circuit Court judge found in the claimant’s favour, awarding her €60,000 in compensation. However, he applied a 20% penalty for her contributory negligence.

Family Compensated for Emotional Trauma During Mock Robbery

Posted: January 19th, 2016

The Circuit Civil Court has approved two settlements of compensation for young sisters that were caught up in a fake armed robbery.

The incident occurred in Dundrum Shopping Centre in March 2013, when Abbie and Casie Kennedy (aged eleven and eight respectively) were shopping in H&M with their mother. Whilst in the changing rooms, they heard voices shouting at staff in the clothes shop, swearing and ordering them to the ground.

The family remained in the changing rooms, entirely unaware that the scene they were hearing was entirely staged as part of a training exercise for staff.  The family remained in the room until the shouting stopped, at which point the girls’ mother, Claudia, tried to look outside of the door. However, she could not see anything and told her daughters to stay put until she could hear other voices.

Eventually, the family exited the room, at which point Claudia questioned the manager as to what had happened. She was furious that nobody had thought to check for customers in the changing rooms, and as such rang the head office in England with her complaint.

However, the retailer were unsympathetic and offered a curt apology with a €30 voucher. Unsatisfied, Claudia made a claim for compensation for the trauma she and her daughters endured against H&M Hennes &Mauritz (Ireland) Ltd, claiming that she and her daughters feared for their lives.

H&M Hennes &Mauritz (Ireland) Ltd made an offer of compensation to each of Claudia’s daughters, offering €8,000 to Casie and €10,000 to Abbie. Judge Rory MacCable oversaw proceedings when the case progressed to the Circuit Civil Court, where he heard that the family were happy to accept the offer.

Kitchen Assistant Successful in Compensation Claim for Accident in Dunnes Stores

Posted: June 11th, 2014

A kitchen assistant has made a successful compensation claim for an accident in Dunnes Stores following a hearing at the High Court.

Dorota Michalowska (29) had been clearing tables in the canteen of her local Dunnes Store in Clonmel, County Tipperary, and was returning to the kitchen with a trolley stacked up dirty dishes when, on 14th July 2011, she slipped on a frozen chip that had been left on the floor.

Dorota fell heavily, and suffered a soft tissue injury to her knee which immobilised her for three months and kept her off from work for a further three months .

After seeking injury claims advice from a solicitor, Dorota made a compensation claim for an accident in Dunnes Stores – a claim that was contested by her employers on the grounds that Dorota had most likely been the author of her own misfortune by dropping the chip herself.

However, at the High Court, Ms Justice Mary Irvine agreed with Dorota´s allegations that Dunnes Stores had failed to provide her with a safe environment in which to work and had failed to adequately warn employees of the hazard risk presented by frozen chips on the floor.

Judge Irvine determined that, if Dorota had dropped the frozen chip herself – and then spent time clearing the tables of dirty dishes – it was likely that the chip on the floor would have defrosted and no longer have been a hazard by the time Dorota slipped on it and sustained her injury.

The judge commented that two other members of staff were working in the canteen on the day of Dorota´s accident, and “on the balance of probabilities” it was likely that one of Dorota´s colleagues had dropped the frozen chip and neglected to pick it up or not seen the hazard at all.

Judge Irvine ruled that Dunnes Stores were therefore liable for the accident due to the negligence of its employees, and awarded Dorota €82,750 in settlement of her compensation claim for accident in Dunnes Stores – which included an amount of €20,000 for future pain and suffering as Judge Irvine believed that Dorota would likely start to suffer arthritis at an early age because of her slip and fall accident in Dunnes Stores.

Compensation for Accident in Debenhams Approved in Court

Posted: April 10th, 2014

A settlement of compensation for an accident in Debenhams has been approved by a Circuit Court judge after he heard the circumstances of a schoolgirl´s finger injury.

Naoise Walsh (now nine years of age) was shopping in the Debenhams store in Henry Street with her mother in March 2011, when she attempted to get a drink from one of the fridges in the store´s café.

As Naoise reached up to get the drink carton, one of her fingers got caught in the wire mesh of the shelf on which the carton was standing and, as Naoise tried to pull her finger free, she cut it against the metal of the shelf.

Naoise was taken to the Children´s Hospital in Temple Street by ambulance, where her injured finger was cleaned and dressed. The next day, Naoise underwent a general anaesthetic so that doctors could see whether any permanent tendon damage had been sustained; after which Naoise had stitches in her finger and was discharged.

A claim for compensation for an accident in Debenhams was filed by Naoise´s mother – Amy Walsh of Bluebell, Dublin – and the company immediately admitted that their negligence had been responsible for Naoise´s injury.

A settlement of €10,000 injury compensation for the accident in Debenhams was negotiated; but before the claim could be completely resolved, the settlement had to be approved by a judge. Consequently, at the Circuit Civil Court, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke was informed of the circumstances of Naoise´s injury before approving the settlement of compensation.

Woman Awarded Compensation for Accident on an Escalator

Posted: September 26th, 2013

A woman who developed a neurological illness after an accident on a supermarket escalator has been awarded $9.9 million compensation by a jury in New York.

Rose Nudelman (51) had just completed her shopping in her local Costco Supermarket in New York, when she and her husband took their loaded supermarket shopping trolley onto the ascending escalator between floors.

The tread on the escalator had been made to secure the wheels of the shopping trolley, so that customers did not have to retain hold of their trolleys in order to prevent them rolling back down the slope. However, while Rose and her husband were ascending the escalator, the trolley wheels slipped from their mountings and the trolley rolled down the escalator, catching Rose on the wrist.

Although it did not appear at the time that she had sustained any significant injury, Rose and her husband reported the incident to the management of the supermarket. However, within two weeks of the incident happening, Rose began to experience issues with walking which deteriorated quickly so that she was only capable of hobbling around her home with the aid of a walking stick.

Rose went to see her doctor who, after an extensive series of examinations, diagnosed her with the neurological illness “Complex Regional Pain Syndrome” – saying that its cause was nerve damage due to being hit by the shopping trolley on the escalator.

As her condition deteriorated further, Rose sought legal advice from a solicitor, and made a claim for compensation for her accident on an escalator against Costco. Costco Supermarket rejected the claim that Rose´s injury was attributable to her escalator accident and alleged that she had exaggerated the level of her injury to justify her compensation claim. Rose´s solicitor however believed that his client had a strong case, and issued court proceedings.

Costco Supermarket continued to deny their liability and refused to settle the claim for compensation for an accident on an escalator out of court. However, when the case went to trial, the jury found in Rose´s favour and awarded her $9.9 million in compensation for an accident on an escalator.

The company who insure Costco Supermarket have indicated that they will appeal both the verdict and the size of the award, but Rose´s solicitor commented after hearing about the possible appeal that no amount of compensation would convince anybody he knew to trade places with his client.

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