Thursday 19 September 2019

Boy (9) who lacerated cheek and forehead in Dublin crèche awarded €42,500

(stock photo)
(stock photo)

Ray Managh

A nine-year-old boy, whose forehead and cheek were lacerated by wire fence in a Dublin crèche, has been awarded damages of €42,500 in the Circuit Civil Court.

Circuit Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard that on 17 April 2018 Billy Hickey, of Shanid Road, Harold’s Cross, Dublin 6, had been playing outside under the care and custody of Kids Inc. Limited, Grosvenor Road, Rathmines, Dublin, when he fell and struck his head off the fence.

Barrister Conor Kearney, counsel for Billy who sued the crèche through his father, Barry Hickey, said the boy had suffered a number of lacerations to his face and had been rushed by ambulance  to Our Lady’s Hospital, Crumlin.

Counsel told the court that Billy, who was eight at the time of the accident, received a 3 cm cut to his forehead and a second one measuring 0.5 cm under his right eye.

Both wounds had been cleaned and closed by the use of paper steri-strips, and the boy had been discharged. He did not have to receive further hospital treatment following his release but had been seen by a plastic surgeon who considered there was no need for surgical intervention.

Mr Kearney, who appeared with Blake Horrigan Solicitors, said Billy had been left with two scars, both of which were visible from conversational distance.  Doctors believed the scars would continue to heal in the next year to eighteen months.

Counsel said it had been alleged that Kids Inc. Limited had been negligent and while caring for the boy and had failed to take adequate precautions for the safety of the child while he was on their premises. Kids Inc, had entered a defence to the claim.

Mr Kearney told the court that a fence encircling the playground had been defective and dangerous and that the crèche owners had failed to check it on a regular basis.

He said  the creche should have ensured that the sharp edges of the wire fence were padded or in some other way protected from children who might fall in the area.

Mr Kearney said that he noticed when examining photos of the scene of the incident  that the base of the fence contained some loose metal edges which could have constituted a hazard.

Counsel also said he considered the offer made in the case to be a fair one and,  taking everything into account, he was happy to recommend the settlement sum offered.

Judge Groarke after examining the boy’s injuries in court, said he would approve the settlement awarding the boy  €42,500 in damages together with his legal costs.

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