Thursday 21 June 2018

Woman wins €7,000 for dodgem whiplash

Tim Healy

A YOUNG woman has been awarded €7,000 for whiplash when she was struck by a "rogue driver" in a dodgem car ride.

Language student Roisin Harkin (22), of Croagh, Dunkineely, Co Donegal, won her action for pain, suffering and inconvenience against Bundoran Adventure Park Ltd, trading as Harrisons Amusements at the Sea Front, Bundoran, Donegal, arising from the incident on July 29, 2004.

A High Court judge said she had been deliberately targeted by two teenage boys, who drove their car in the wrong direction, hitting her head on.

She sued the amusement arcade after her head hit off a pole at the back of the dodgem causing her shoulder and neck injuries.

The amusement company denied the claim and pleaded contributory negligence.

The court heard she was struck by a 14-year-old "rogue driver" and his passenger, who ignored signs saying "one way around" and "no head-on bumping".

The driver of the other dodgem initially hit her on the side, bringing the car to a stop. Two supervisors who were on duty got her car going again, but did not ask her if she was OK, she said.

Then the same car struck her "head on". She was pushed into the corner and hit her head off the pole.

Yesterday, Mr Justice Daniel Herbert said the issue was whether the manoeuvre in question was carried out by the two teenagers and there was no evidence to the contrary. He did not accept that the incident had happened so quickly that it could not have been stopped.

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