Thursday 26 April 2018

Man pulled former Mr Ireland Padraig Hearns from under bin truck in Temple Bar, court hears

Former Mr Ireland Padraig Hearns with Rosanna Davison

A man has told the High Court how he pulled former Mr Ireland Padraig Hearns from under a bin truck in Dublin's Temple Bar.

David L'Estrange, who was waiting with his brother on Sycamore Street for a lift in the early hours of April 23, 2007, said he heard a woman's high pitched scream.

"I saw legs sticking out from the truck. I ran over and grabbed the legs and pulled him out." he said. He thought he had got Mr Hearns before the accident but then realised he was unconscious and saw blood on the cobblestones.

Mr L'Estrange said he stayed with Mr Hearns until the ambulance arrived telling him he he would be ok, in case he could hear him.

He said everybody was in a panic and people were shouting Mr Hearns was dead. One person shouted at the bin lorry driver to turn off the engine.

Mr L'Estrange was giving evidence on the second day of Mr Hearns' action against  Dublin City Council as a result of the accident in the early hours of April 23, 2007.

Mr Hearns, the court has heard, was stooped over on the side of a street in the early hours of the morning bleeding after he had been assaulted and punched five or six times in the nose when the accident happened.

The court heard Mr Hearns, who was the country's first male model, represented Ireland at the Mr World contest.

He suffered various fractures including a skull fracture and was in an induced coma for over a week due to his injuries.  He had tyre marks on his back and head.

He spent over seven months in hospital and the court heard he suffered significant cognitive impairments a result of the brain injury.

Mr Hearns (39) of Lower Hollywood Cross, Hollywood, Co Wicklow has sued Dublin City Council as a result of the accident with the bin lorry at around 2.45am.

Mr Hearns' side contends that under the bye laws introduced by the City Council, refuse collection should only take place between 6am and midnight unless otherwise authorised by the council.

The council denies all the claims.

The case resumes next week.

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