Schoolgirl who had foot crushed by gate in 'terrifying experience' awarded €45k damages
A 14-year-old schoolgirl, whose left foot was crushed when part of a heavy roller gate fell on her in what was described as “a terrifying experience,” has been awarded €45,000 damages in the Circuit Civil Court.
Barrister Kevin Lenahan told Circuit Court President, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke, that Katelyn McCann was leaving the car park at St Catherine’s Community Sports Centre in Marrowbone Lane, Dublin, when the accident.
Mr Lenahan, who appeared for Katelyn with Deborah Crowley of Ferrys Solicitors, said that through her mother, Ms Alice Connell, she had sued Dublin City Council who owns the car park.
He said Katelyn, of St Anthony’s Crescent, Rialto, Dublin, sustained a significant crush injury to her foot in which five bones, including four metatarsal bones, had been fractured.
She had been taken to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin where a back slab had been fitted to her leg and a plaster of Paris applied to her foot which had been placed in a surgical boot. She had been able to weight bear with the use of crutches.
Mr Lenahan said that immediately preceding the accident there had been some horseplay and a group of boys had attempted to slide the gate closed in its rail and prevent Katelyn from leaving the car park.
He said it had taken a number of people to lift the gate and engineering evidence would have revealed that it had been in a dangerous condition. It was possible for it to over-run its guide rail and disengage from the guide rollers which held it in a vertical position.
Mr Lenahan said the accident occurred because the mechanism to block the over-travel of the gate had been missing.
Judge Groarke, who approved the €45,000 settlement offer by Dublin City Council, heard that Katelyn had a keen interest in dance and sports to which she had been able to return following the accident which happened two years ago.