Man who fractured his ankle after slipping on floor of Copper Face Jacks awarded €80,000

By Ann O'Loughlin

A Limerick man who claimed he slipped on a wet floor at the Copper Face Jacks nightclub in Dublin city and broke his ankle in two places has been awarded over €80,000 by the High Court.

Colin McNamara who is a bar manager was in the Dublin nightclub after attending an Ireland soccer at the Aviva Stadium three years ago.

Mr Justice Michael Hanna said it was a serious and significant injury, particularly with regard to the fact that Mr McNamara "has to be fleet of foot" in his job as a bar manager.

The judge added Mr McNamara slipped on a floor that was wet, presumably from spilt drink, and was absent from work for five months after the accident.

The judge said it was clear it was at least an injury of moderate severity with the risk of facing surgery in the future.

The appropriate compensation, the judge said, was €80,000 plus special damages of €7,116 to cover medical and other expenses.

Colin McNamara (aged 36), Sycamore Avenue, Rathbane, Co Limerick had sued Breanagh Catering Ltd, with offices at Harcourt Street, Dublin, and the owners of the nightclub Copper Face Jacks at Harcourt Street, Dublin, as a result of the accident on October 9, 2015.

Colin McNamara outside court today. Pic: Collins

Mr McNamara claimed he slipped on a floor which he alleged was wet and represented an alleged slipping hazard to patrons.

He claimed there was an alleged failure to take any or any adequate steps to clean and dry the floor surface and the floor had been allegedly allowed to remain wet and slippy and allegedly represented a danger to patrons and allegedly caused Mr McNamara to slip and injure himself.

The claims were denied and the court was told that judgment in the case had been entered in default of appearance and the case was before the court for assessment of damages only.

In evidence, Mr McNamara said bouncers came and picked him from the floor and brought him out to a back alley where a member of staff tended to his leg and looked at the ankle and told him it was not broken.

Mr McNamara said he was told they could not ring for an ambulance and he "hobbled away" and got a taxi back to his hotel. He said he was in a lot of pain that night and when he got back to Limerick he went to hospital where he was told he had fractured his ankle.

He later had to have surgery and was on crutches.

Mr Justice Hanna said he had an order of the court giving judgment against the defendant in this case, therefore issues of liability did not arise. It would have been open to the defendant to intervene in court to challenge the medical evidence and they had chosen not to do so, as was their right.

He said they had chosen to opt for a legal cost accountant and the defendant although not represented was not inactive, but attempts at resolution were not successful.


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