Friday 20 September 2019

Chef awarded €75k after cutting hand while shucking oyster

Jennifer Donohue, from Kilbarrack, Dublin pictured leaving the Four Courts yesterday after a High Court action. Photo: Collins Courts
Jennifer Donohue, from Kilbarrack, Dublin pictured leaving the Four Courts yesterday after a High Court action. Photo: Collins Courts

Tim Healy

A chef who cut her hand as she shucked an oyster in a restaurant has been awarded €75,000 by the High Court.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross said Jennifer Donohue, who was opening an oyster with a knife, sustained a very deep laceration to her left hand and later had to have surgery and was in a cast for several weeks.

Ms Donohoe, Mount Olive Road, Kilbarrack, Dublin, sued Dorans On The Pier, West Pier, Howth, Co Dublin, as a result of the accident on November 23, 2014. She claimed there was a failure to ensure there were proper tools or knives available for the specific task of oyster shucking and in particular failing to supply such a tool to her.

It was further claimed there was a failure to train or supervise adequately or at all the practice of oyster shucking being performed by employees and in particular Ms Donohue.

Liability was admitted and the case was before the court for assessment of damages only.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross said Ms Donohue had worked all her life as a chef and was a head chef at the time in the Howth restaurant. She was cutting up oysters and was holding he said what was accepted by the defendants as an unsuitable knife when she sliced her left hand. The wound was dressed at the chemist but she later went to hospital and she had to have surgery.

The judge said the laceration was a deep one and she needed to have 19 stitches and was in a cast for four to six weeks.

He said she went back to work and later took a job in another establishment as head chef.

He said she was well motivated in relation to work.

Her complaints  were in relation to lack of sensation around where the injury had been on her left hand and that it also reacts to cold weather. She also, the judge said had difficult opening and closing buttons.

Ms Donohue he said was not somebody who exaggerated her injuries.

The judge granted a stay in event of appeal providing €50,000 was was paid out immediately.

Online Editors

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News