Farmer settles case over combine accident

Gearoid Hurley, from Bandon, Co. Cork pictured leaving the Four Courts during his High Court action for damages. Pic: Collins Courts
Gearoid Hurley, from Bandon, Co. Cork pictured leaving the Four Courts during his High Court action for damages. Pic: Collins Courts

Tim Healy

A farmer who sued after suffering horrific injuries when his hand was sucked in to a combine harvester as he tried to free grain clogging up the machine has settled his High Court action.

Gearoid Hurley (35) told the court how after his hand became trapped he was screaming in pain and his  employer tried to manually reverse the mechanism with a wrench but was unsuccessful. It was was nearly an hour before his hand was freed after firemen cut through the auger of the machine.

On the fourth day of the hearing on Wednesday, his counsel Dr John O'Mahony said issues  in the action had been resolved and the case could be struck out.

The court had heard Mr Hurley had been due to inherit the family dairy farm outside Bandon but despite the heroic efforts of hospital doctors his right hand is compromised  and he cannot work as  a dairy farmer.

“Farming was his life and soul and his exclusive commitment," Counsel said. 

The court was also told that generations of the Hurley family have farmed on the land outside Bandon since 1740.

Mr Hurley has since taken over an outside tillage farm and his sister inherited the family dairy farm.

Mr Hurley, Mallowgaton,Bandon, Co Cork had sued Mark Troy,an agricultural contractor of Knockroe,Bandon,Co Cork and the agricultural company Ardkeena Agri Services Ltd also of Knockroe,Bandon,Co Cork as a result of the accident on September 16,2016 on land in Brinny, Inishannon, Co Cork..

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Mr Hurley was working for Mr Troy at the time and was attempting to manually unclog grain from a combine harvester, when it was claimed the auger of the machine was allegedly activated by Mr Troy.

Mr Hurley claimed he was allegedly requested to unclog the combine harvester in  dangerous and hazardous circumstances and the auger of the harvester was allegedly activated in circumstances in which injury was likely to be caused.

The claims were denied and the terms of the settlement are confidential.

Online Editors


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