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.

Wrongful Death Compensation for Family of Iraqi Victim

An Iraqi family, whose son was supposedly killed by British Armed Forces in Iraq, has won its fight for wrongful death compensation from the Ministry of Defence.

Saeed Shabram, 18, of Basra, Iraq, had been held by British troops on suspicion of looting in May 2003, and was taken with his cousin, Menem Akaili, into the Shatt al-Arab River by soldiers in an act of “wetting” – an unofficial action intended to humiliate the perpetrators of petty crime in the area.

Bystanders took Menem out of the river, but Saeed´s body disappeared. Saeed´s father employed a diver to search for Saeed and, after a four hour wait, Saeed´s lifeless body was pulled from the river – bloated and covered with bruises.

After seeking legal counsel, the Shabram family sued the Ministry of Defence for wrongful death and just before the case was to be heard in London´s Royal Courts of Justice, lawyers for the family announced that an out-of-court settlement had been agreed.

Without accepting liability for the wrongful death of Saeed, the Ministry of Defence agreed to pay 100,000 pounds to his family and a further unreported sum to Menem.

Van Accident Victim Awarded 177,575 Euros

A woman who was hit by a van while crossing a busy Dublin street has been awarded almost 178,000 Euros in van accident victim compensation in the High Court.

Amy McKernan (36) from North Ewington, Oxfordshire, was crossing the street at the junction of Wicklow Street and Clarendon Street on May 7th 2002, when she was struck by a van driven by Yuk Fong from Dublin. The force of the collision threw her onto the bonnet of the vehicle, before she landed on the road surface – sustaining facial and back injuries.

In her van accident victim claim against Mr Fong and the owner of the van – Mr Yau Tsali Li – Amy claimed that the van was driven at excessive speed, as she had seen the van pulling away from the Chinese restaurant outside which it had been parked and felt she still had plenty of time to cross the road.

Yuk Fong and Yau Tsali Li denied the van accident victim claims, and counter-claimed that Amy had contributed to her own injuries by failing to keep a proper lookout. However, as Amy was about to step onto the footpath when the accident happened, Mr. Justice John Quirke at the High Court determined that Amy had established negligence in the driving of the van, whereas the defendants had failed to show that Amy had in any way been responsible for the accident and her injuries.

Car Accident Brain Damaged Mother Wins Multi Million Pound Settlement

A 48-year-old single mother, who was catastrophically injured in a road traffic accident in 2009, has settled her claim with the negligent driver´s insurance company in a settlement which experts believe to be worth many millions of pounds.

The woman, who requested not to be named, was driving along Miles Gray Road in Basildon, Essex, when she was involved in a head on collision with the Ford Ka driven by 76 year old Ernest Bromsgrove. Tragically, the pensioner had suffered a heart attack and lost consciousness as he was driving, and the collision caused in his death.

The anonymous woman was so badly injured that she had to be airlifted to the Queens Hospital in Romford for emergency treatment and now suffers from permanent paralysis on the left hand side of her body and is confined to a wheelchair. Due to the incident, the woman driver also suffers from eyesight problems and has difficulty communicating with her family.

The pensioner´s insurance firm accepted liability for the woman´s injuries and negotiated a personal injury compensation settlement with the victim´s legal representatives. The details of the out of court settlement were not elaborated on however, as it has to provide life time care for the victim. is anticipated to be many millions of pounds.