Monday 5 December 2016

Girl (8) who was knocked down as she chased dog across the road awarded €25,000

Ray Managh

Published 05/07/2016 | 12:41

The Four Courts, Dublin
The Four Courts, Dublin

An eight-year-old girl, who was knocked down by a car as she ran across a road after her dog, has been awarded €25,000 damages in the Circuit Civil Court.

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Barrister Fran Rooney said Katelynn Barrett had run across Canal Road, Portarlington, Co Laois, in a bid to catch her dog as she thought it would have been injured or killed.

Mr Rooney, counsel for Katelynn, of Raheen Park, Ballyfermot, Dublin, said that in 2011 she had been visiting family friends in Portarlington with her mother, Ms Susan Barret, when the accident happened.

He said Katelynn, who will be 13 on the 31st of this month, had not seen the car of Ms Bridget Mitchell, Annamoe, Portalington, approaching and was knocked down.

Mr Rooney, who appeared with B and P Byrne Solicitors, told Circuit Court President, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke, that there could be a problem on liability if the defendant’s insurers contested the case.

He said the defendant’s insurer had indicated they would claim there was a liability issue on the basis that Katelynn had run out on to the road after her dog and that Ms Mitchell did not have time to react.

Mr Rooney told the court a settlement offer of €25,000 had been made to Katelynn, who sued the defendant through her mother Susan, and he was recommending that the court approve the offer.

He said Katelynn had suffered a fracture to her left wrist, a cut to her lower lip and abrasions to her face and chin and cuts to her ankles and right knee.  There had been no question of scarring.

She had been taken to the fracture clinic at Midlands General Hospital where she had been treated for her injuries.  She had suffered pain in her left wrist for four months and it had remained weak for some time afterwards.

Judge Groarke, approving the €25,000 settlement, said there was a serious issue on liability according to statements made by a garda and an independent witness.

“This is a good offer as Katelynn was fine after four months and had made a full recovery.  It would be reckless of me to refuse the offer,” he said.

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