Museum failed in its duty of care to visitor who fell on stairway

Negligence, Occupiers liability, Personal injuries

High Court finds for the plaintiff and grants an award of damages in the sum of €66,989.59 in a personal injuries claim arising from a slip and fall on a museum stairway, on the grounds that: (a) the defendant failed in its duty to take reasonable care to ensure the safety of the plaintiff as, had there been an adequate and safe handrail system on the steps in question, the plaintiff would not have suffered the injury he did; (b) the plaintiff had suffered significant trauma, discomfort, inconvenience, expense and upset; and (c) there was no basis for a finding of contributory negligence. 


Trip hazard on footpath arose from subsidence rather than tree roots

Assessment of damages, Personal injuries

High Court, on appeal from the Circuit Court, awards general damages of €55,000 arising from a trip and fall on a public footpath, on the grounds that: (a) expert evidence demonstrated that a ‘lip’ between two slabs had arisen from subsidence and not from roots of a nearby tree; and (b) a local authority was liable for the manner in which the footpath had been constructed. 


Insufficient evidence that slip and fall in petrol station had occurred

Personal injuries

High Court dismisses claim for damages for personal injuries arising from an alleged slip and fall on spilt oil or diesel at a petrol station, on the grounds that the plaintiff had failed to establish his claim on the balance of probabilities in circumstances where there was insufficient evidence that the accident had occurred. 


Hunting accident was due to plaintiff’s disregard for her own safety

High Court dismisses personal injuries claim arising out of an accident during a fox hunt, on the grounds that, while there was no doubt that the plaintiff had suffered a serious injury: (a) reasonable care was taken by both defendants in relation to the outing in question, the rules and procedures of the sport were followed and the Field Master had fulfilled his obligations in relation to the particular obstacle, the plaintiff having the final decision to make as to whether she ought to jump or not; and (b) the plaintiff had not had due regard for her own safety and ought not to have jumped unnecessarily the obstacle in relation to which a warning had been given. 


Allegation of fraud arose because road traffic accident had not been properly investigated

High Court, on appeal from the Circuit Court, awards damages for personal injuries to two passengers in a road traffic accident, on the grounds that: (a) the defendant’s insurer had failed to establish that the claim was fraudulent, in circumstances where the driver of one of the cars had not been called to give evidence in the Circuit Court; and (b) any conclusion of fraud on the part of the insurance company had arisen because the accident had not been properly investigated. 


Damages awarded where uninsured driver failed to drive in a reasonable manner

High Court grants an award damages in the sum of €117,069 for a road traffic accident, on grounds that defendant had been driving carelessly, without due regard for other road users, without due regard for his own disability and without insurance.