Toddler critical after 30ft balcony plunge
Published 01/05/2010 | 05:00
A toddler was in a critical condition in hospital last night after plunging 30 feet from a third-floor balcony outside his home.
The mother of little Brandon Nolan (3) said he was "blessed" to be alive after tumbling from the balcony at the Dominick Street flats in Dublin's north inner city.
However, the child, who had emergency surgery yesterday, remains in a critical condition in Temple Street Children's Hospital, Dublin.
Neighbours spoke of hearing screams and shouts at around 6pm on Thursday after the little boy was discovered lying on the pavement, three floors below the flat. He appears to have climbed over the balcony wall, which is topped with square iron railings.
His devastated mother, Therese, was maintaining a vigil yesterday by his bedside.
"He got an operation early this morning to take a blood clot out of his brain. It will be two or three days before we know how he will be," she said.
Brandon is the youngest of four boys and his mother is expecting another child.
She told how she was in the flat with Brandon on Thursday evening when the terrible accident happened. "I was sitting down and I was on the phone. Spongebob was on the telly. I didn't see him," she said.
Neighbour Carol Rooney said it was amazing the toddler had survived the fall and that something needed to be done about the safety of the balconies at the flat complex.
"I heard screaming and shouting just after 6 o'clock. It was terrible. He fell from the top floor . . . He is a lovely little boy. It's terrible.
"When the ambulance came, I heard the child crying and I thanked God he was still alive. We are all praying for him."
Another local resident, Kenneth Dowdall, said it was all too easy for children to climb onto the iron railings on the balconies.
"People with small children should not be living on the top floors of these flats. There's not enough protection on the balconies. Any child will get up to anything. It's so easy for any child to climb onto the railings.
"Something could still be done to make the balconies safer, even though the horse has already left the stable in this case," he added.
In March, an 18-month-old toddler died after he fell from the second-floor window of a Galway city flat complex on Rosemary Avenue.