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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.

Categories: Shop Injury News

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