Month: August 2011

Hotel Bedbug Bite Compensation of 3,200 Pounds Awarded to Sisters

Two sisters, whose stay in London was ruined by the bites they received from bedbugs present in the bedding at their hotel, have each been awarded 1,600 pounds in compensation in an out-of-court settlement.

Melanie Carmen (59) from Whitstable, Kent, and Joy McDonagh (51) from Sidcup, Kent, stayed three nights in London at the Airways Hotel in Victoria in February 2010 to celebrate Joy´s 50th birthday. However, after their first night in the hotel, both were covered in bites from an infestation of bedbugs.

They reported the issue to hotel staff and requested that they were moved to another room. However, there were also bedbugs in the change of room and, after two further nights of poor sleep, the women had a total of 138 bites between them.

After seeking legal guidance, Melanie and Joy sued the Airways Hotel for personal injury compensation and without accepting liability, the hotel settled out of court – paying each 1,600 pounds to cover the women´s medical expenses and loss of earnings as they were unable to immediately return to work after their visit to London.

Broken Leg Holiday Accident Woman Compensated

A tourist, who broke her leg and suffered head injuries when falling down a pool maintenance shaft while holidaying in Turkey, has been compensated by the holiday firm through who she booked her vacation.

Michelle Dragon (49) from Southend, Essex, had been on holiday with some friends in the resort town of Marmaris in 2006, and was returning to her room at the Club Sarba Hotel when the accident happened. A shaft which was used for storage and pool maintenance had been left uncovered by hotel staff and Michelle – not aware that the grill had been removed – fell down into the shaft, knocking herself unconscious and breaking her right leg.

Due to her injuries Michelle spent ten days in a Turkish Hospital, during which time she underwent two operations in order to attach metal plates to her broken leg in order for her to travel home. On her return to the UK, Michelle underwent eight months of rehabilitation – having to re-learn how to walk again with a metal brace attached.

In 2008, Michelle was capable of returning to work – although only for 25 hours per week – but, in 2009, she had to undergo a further operation to take a bone graft from her hip to fuse her damaged ankle. At the time Michelle´s doctors were afraid that she may lose her leg, but Michelle recovered sufficiently to walk with the assistance of crutches.

After taking legal counsel, Michelle sued the travel firm through which she had booked the holiday – Goldtrail Holidays – and although they had gone out of business in 2010, a settlement was reached with their insurers for an undisclosed six-figure sum.

Farm Fatalities Continue to Rise

A conference in Dublin, organised by the Health and Safety Authority, Teagasc and the Farm Safety Partnership Advisory Committee has heard that the number of farm fatalities has already reached 16 this year, and is on its way to passing the twenty year high of 26 farm-related deaths in 2010.

Main speaker at the event, Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney, heard that the highest proportion of deaths on farms was due to accidents with machinery, but that other hazards – such as the handling of livestock and the prevention of falls – also had to be tackled.

The Minister responded by telling those present that “People working on farms need to be more conscious of safety requirements, in particular since in many instances they are working on their own. A significant change in mindset is required if we are to prevent further serious farm accidents”.

He went on to say “By continuously talking about and being aware of farm safety we can together bring about a change of culture and farmer thinking in this area”, and concluded his speech by saying “changing farmers´ attitudes is ultimately about self-regulation”.

The conference, which was hosted in Castleknock heralded the first time that an international meeting on agricultural occupational health and safety had been held in Ireland, and representatives from the United States, Norway, Denmark, Italy and Great Britain were also in attendance.