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Bus Injury Award set at €121k

A bus injury award of €121,493 has been made to a woman who suffered a spinal injury after a bus in which she was a passenger drove over a speed ramp too quickly.

Ciara Whelan (23) from Drumcondra, Dublin, was travelling on a Dublin Bus being driven through the grounds of the Connolly Memorial Hospital in Blanchardstown in April 2006, when it hit a speed ramp too quickly and caused Ciara to hit her head severely on the roof of the bus.

After falling into a nearby seat, Ciara was unable to catch her breath or speak. Another passenger witnessed what had occurred and alerted the bus driver who stopped the bus. An ambulance was called, and Ciara was admitted into the hospital where she was treated for a crush fracture of the L3 lumbar vertebra.

Mr Justice John Quirke at the High Court heard that Ciara remained in hospital for over a week, after which she was required to wear a neck brace for three months. Ciara told the court that she currently suffers frequent back pain but it is controlled by anti-inflammatory drugs and ongoing physiotherapy. The court was also told that Dublin Bus had admitted liability for Ciara´s injuries and the case was before Mr Justice John Quirke for assessment of damages only.

On awarding Ciara €121,493 in compensation, Judge Quirke said that it was established that Ciara had suffered a very serious injury which would cause her continuing pain and restriction of movement in the future.