A motorist stopped in a line of traffic in Castlemartyr suffered a serious back injury when his car was rear-ended by a Ford Transit van where the van driver had fallen asleep. Yesterday he was awarded over €116,000 in compensation.
Christopher Quilligan, of Avalon, Lehenaghmore, Farmers Cross, Cork, brought a case for compensation before Mr Justice Robert Haughton at the High Court sitting in Cork.
Counsel John O’Mahony opened the case and the plaintiff gave evidence. However, by yesterday afternoon, counsel Tom Creed told the judge the case had reached agreement between the plaintiff and the liquidator of Setanta Insurance in the sum of €116,956.
Mr Justice Haughton congratulated the parties for reaching a settlement. Liability for the accident was never an issue. It had only come before the court to assess the amount of damages to be paid to the plaintiff.
Mr Quilligan said he had been sitting in his Audi SX with the handbrake on at the end of a line of traffic on the Cork-Waterford road outside Castlemartyr.
“It was 5.15pm,” he said. “All of a sudden there was a bang. I was pushed forward. The driver behind fell asleep and pushed me on 10 to 15ft and pushed me on to the car in front of me. When I initially got out of the car I had low back pain and pain across my ribs where I was wearing a seatbelt. I drove the car home. That evening after a few hours I went to Cork University Hospital.”
Mr O’Mahony said: “The pain was severe and protracted.”
The plaintiff, aged 23 at the time of the accident, was perfectly fit and healthy with no pre-existing back difficulty but as a result of this accident, he suffered a rupture that required surgery.
Mr O’Mahony said: “The problem is that, notwithstanding neurosurgical interventions ,he has continued to be symptomatic. He has had a rough period of time since December 2012.”
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