Friday 23 February 2018

Pet shop had no health and safety rep, brain-bug case told

Tim Healy

A YOUNG woman who claims she contracted a rare brain disease from parrots while working in a pet shop told a court yesterday no one was in charge of health and safety at the store.

Patricia Ingle (22), who is paralysed and wheelchair-bound, claims she suffered her permanently disabling injuries after contracting chlamydia psittacosis -- an airborne infection that can transfer from birds to humans. Ms Ingle claims she contracted the infection working in 2008 at the Petmania pet store at Ennis Road, Limerick, the High Court heard. She is suing Petmania Limited, of Jetland Retail Park, Ennis Road, Limerick; its parent company O'Keeffe's of Kilkenny Limited, Springhill, Kilkenny; and the HSE for alleged negligent mismanagement of her condition when she attended the Midwest Regional Hospital.

The claims are denied.

Ms Ingle told counsel for the HSE no one in the pet store had been designated to deal with health and safety. When it was put to her by counsel for Petmania that she also had pets in her home, she said she kept three cats in 2008 but they were not allowed inside her house.

She also agreed two of her aunts on her mother's side had TB but she had no contact with them when she was growing up. Ms Ingle said if she had money, she would use it to learn how to eat, walk and swim and breathe properly.

She felt it was embarrassing for her parents to act as her daytime carers. Ms Ingle is an in-patient at the Midwestern Regional Hospital, Dooraydoyle.

The hearing continues.

Irish Independent

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