Family of mechanic crushed to death gets €550,000
THE family of a mechanic who was crushed to death between two diggers in a workplace accident has received a €550,000 settlement from his employers.
Ronan Conway (27) died following injuries he received in an accident at O'Brien's Hire at Kilcullen, Co Wicklow, on November 26, 2008.
His fiancee Anne Marie Morgan (30), of Calverstown Lawns, Kilcullen, Co Wicklow, had brought an action against OB Hire and Sales Ltd, claiming Mr Conway's fatal injuries were caused by the negligence and breach of duty of his employers.
The defendants had denied the claims.
Ms Morgan had been in a relationship with Mr Conway for eight years and they had planned to get married but her life had "changed forever" following his death.
Hugh Mohan, for Ms Morgan, yesterday told Mr Justice John Quirke that on the date of the accident the deceased had been driving a mini-digger across a yard which had "little or no light".
He was alerted to something in front of him and had left the cab of the machine without securing the safety lever. He then became caught between the digger he had been driving and another digger and was fatally crushed.
An ambulance was immediately called but Mr Conway was pronounced dead on arrival at Naas General Hospital.
Ms Morgan had claimed her partner's fatal injuries were caused by the negligence and breach of duty of his employers. The claims were denied.
The defendants had also claimed Mr Conway had failed to apply the training he received in relation to the operation of the mini-digger as he failed to lock the safety lever before exiting the cab.
Mr Justice Quirke was yesterday told the defendant had agreed to pay the sum of €550,000 to the family of Mr Conway and had also agreed to cover Ms Morgan's costs.
The settlement includes payments of €12,628 to Mr Conway's father Edward, who covered the funeral expenses; €3,628 each to Mr Conway's mother Josephine, brother Eamonn and sister Kim; and a payment of €53,628 each to his daughter Megan (9) and also Ms Morgan's son Jamie Morgan (11), to whom Mr Conway was a father figure.
The sum of €418,022 will be paid to Ms Morgan.
Mr Mohan said his client was happy with the settlement and that a deduction on the figure had been made because of a "contributory negligence issue".
Approving the settlement, Mr Justice Quirke expressed his sympathies to Ms Morgan and her family for their loss.