A judge has ruled that an injury claim for a bin truck accident should be settled for €4,885,888 after a hearing at the High Court.
Padraig Hearns was enjoying a night out in Dublin on 23rd April 2007 when he was assaulted in Sycamore Street in the city´s Temple Bar area and was subsequently run over by a Dublin City Council bin truck, as he lay dazed and confused in the road.
Due to the bin truck running over him, Padraig (39) from Hollywood in County Wicklow sustained a fractured skull and severe arm and injuries. He was put into an induced coma on arrival at hospital, where he stayed for several months recovering from his injuries.
Due to the brain injury sustained when the bin truck ran over him, Padraig – a former air steward for British Airways – will never be able to work again or live an independent life. He currently lives at home where he is cared for by his parents and siblings.
Padraig´s parents made an injury claim for a bin truck accident against Dublin City Council, but the local authority denied their responsibility for Padraig´s injuries – arguing that it was not the fault of the bin truck operators that Padraig had been lying in the street at the time of the accident.
The claim went to the High Court, where it was heard before Mr Justice Michael Peart. The judge found in Padraig´s favour after being told that Dublin City Council had broken its own by-laws by collecting commercial waste in Temple Bar between the hours of 12:00pm and 6:00pm.
The judge noted “It makes complete sense from a public safety point of view that these large refuse trucks would not be permitted to try and negotiate their way through an area such as the narrow and crowded streets of Temple Bar when so many people are present”.
Judge Peart added that the operators of the bin truck had a duty of care to have one operator outside of the truck as it moved on in order to ensure that it was safe to do so. He considered that Dublin City Council´s bin truck operators had broken that duty of care by failing to notice Padraig lying in the path of the vehicle.
The judge awarded Padraig €4,885,888 in settlement of his injury claim for a bin truck accident which included €350,000 for past and present pain and suffering, €266,341 for loss of earnings, €155,230 for care costs to date and €3,485,000 for care costs in the future. He also awarded costs against Dublin City Council.