“He said he was unaware the roadway was dirty and was surprised somebody had an accident. I asked him to make a statement and he declined to do so,” said Garda O’Sullivan.
Sergeant Michelle Leahy asked if Mr Sheedy had any injuries.
“He did seek medical attention and had fractured ribs,” said Garda O’Sullivan.
Brendan Gill, solicitor for Mr Fitzgibbon, asked if a medical report had been produced.
The garda said “no”.
Mr Gill asked about the weather conditions on the day.
“It had rained earlier,” said Garda O’Sullivan.
Mr Gill asked if there had been any other complaints about the animal crossing being slippy?
“No. It is the responsibility of the landowner whose animals are crossing the road,” said Garda O’Sullivan.
Mr Gill asked what evidence she had that the waste was from his client’s animals?
“He said the animal crossing belonged to him,” said Garda O’Sullivan.
Mr Gill said: “You can’t say with any certainty the alleged material caused the accident.”
“It was extremely slippy, even for me to walk it,” replied Garda O’Sullivan.
Mr Sheedy took the stand and said he was travelling from Effin to Charleville.
“It had rained earlier so I reduced my speed. I was aware there was an animal crossing so I reduced my speed further. When the bike came into contact with the effluent my front wheel lost traction, came up, the bike went from underneath me and I came down on my right side. When I was trying to get up I slipped a couple of times,” said Mr Sheedy.
The complainant said that he is an RSA approved motorbike instructor and has the highest civilian motorbike qualifications outside of the gardai.
Mr Sheedy told Judge O’Leary he suffered two fractured ribs and ligament damage to his shoulder.
Mr Gill asked him if he was familiar with the cattle crossing being “always dirty” why didn’t he report it?
“It didn’t occur to me until it was a problem,” said Mr Sheedy.
Mr Gill put it to him that there was “numerous reasons” that a bike would lose control.
“It’s possible but the bike didn’t lose traction anywhere else on the road. My riding ability is of the highest standard achievable,” said Mr Sheedy.
Mr Gill said Mr Sheedy isn’t a road engineer.
“No, I am a RSA qualified motorbike rider. I have a good knowledge of road conditions. I am also a motor mechanic,” said Mr Sheedy.
Mr Gill put it to him he is “trying to copperfasten a personal injury charge”.
“No. Days after the accident the farmer made no effort to clean the road. I am a motorcycle trainer - road safety is what I do,” said Mr Sheedy.
Mr Gill said Mr Sheedy is doing his best to establish liability.
“I am doing my best for road safety,” said Mr Sheedy.
Sgt Leahy said the accident was caused by debris.
Mr Gill argued the case be struck out on four grounds. He said the address of Garrienderk South, Charleville, Co Cork on the summons is the wrong county.
“The locus of the accident is key. It should be struck out,” said Mr Gill. Sergeant Leahy said this was a postal address.
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“I live 15 miles from Kilmallock but I don’t get my post if Kilmallock isn’t in the address,” said Sgt Leahy.
Mr Gill said that in the garda’s evidence, she used the word “earth” instead of “dung”.
He continued: “The State has to prove every element of this - that the dung came from animals owned by my client. Just because it looks like it might come from them isn’t good enough,” said Mr Gill.
Lastly, Mr Gill argued the offence was one “more properly taken by the local authority”.
Judge O’Leary asked for written submissions from Mr Gill and the State on the four points. The case was adjourned until March.