€192,000 for Woman Struck by Minibus Wing Mirror

At the High Court €192,000 car accident compensation has been awarded to a woman who was injured when she was hit by the wing mirror of a minibus as she crossed a road.

Ms O’Kelly, a medical representative living in Killester, Dublin, had taken the legal action against Bus Éireann in relation to the accident when she was knocked to the ground at Lough Atalia Road in the Galway harbour area on December 16, 2015.

Ms O’Kelly had informed the court she was crossing the road after 6pm when she saw the minibus just before she was struck on the right shoulder by the wing mirror of the bus which was turning in to the road.

To have her injuries properly treated Ms O’Kelly had to have surgery and don a neck brace for 12 weeks and is left with a scar on her neck.

Bus Éireann accepted liability during the hearing of the case and argued that Ms O’Kelly was also allegedly negligent for the injuries she suffered.

The judge ruled that Bus Éireann driver was “entirely negligent” in that he failed to keep an adequate lookout and did not stay close enough to the left hand side in his own lane and he simply did not see Ms O’Kelly.

Justice O’Hanlon said Ms O’Kelly was lawfully present on the road having taken all correct precautions as she crossed the road. As such he found that no liability was attached to her in relation to the incident.

The judge remarked that there had been “a stark transformation” in Aideen O’Kelly’s working and social life since the accident and the 54-year-old woman’s lifestyle is now “vastly different”.

Ms O’Kelly, she said, was an experienced sailor who took part at a very high competitive level three to four days a week during the sailing season. Sadly she can no longer do so.

The judge said: “Despite her stoicism, her daily living is not of the same quality as it was. She has to put up with imbalance, difficulty reaching items in her kitchen and difficulty in the normal day-to-day tasks.”

In awarding a total of €192,573 car accident compensation, Ms Justice O’Hanlon said while Ms O’Kelly had managed to return to work, she reported a lack of dexterity and feeling in her hands which causes issues putting on jewellery or opening jars.