The effect of a mild scar on the growth pattern of hair on a four-year-old girl’s eyebrow later in life has led to a judge questioning the adequacy of a €10,000 settlement offer by dual defendants.
Circuit Court president Mr Justice Raymond Groarke said that he was not enthusiastic about approving the offer because of how “the noticeable mark” might possibly change hair growth into the future.
John Ferry, counsel for Hadar Amara, whose eyebrow was injured in a bus when she was 22 months old, told the Circuit Civil Court that the bus driver had been forced to slam on his brakes when an unmarked Garda car suddenly pulled out in front of him.
Mr Ferry, who appeared with Anthony Joyce solicitors, said Hadar, whose family lives at Reilly’s Avenue, South Circular Rd, Dublin, was seated in her buggy on the bus when the incident happened.
He said Hadar had been thrown forward and her forehead had struck an upright support on the lower deck of the bus.
A Garda car, without warning, had pulled into the bus lane on the quays in Dublin and the driver had braked suddenly to avoid a collision.
Hadar’s mother, Kiera Sa Fou, told the court in an affidavit that her child had been taken to Temple Street Children’s Hospital where a cut on her eyebrow had been cleaned and sealed with seristrips before she was discharged.
After the incident, Hadar had developed a fear about being put in her buggy and had later been seen by her GP in relation to a soft tissue facial injury.
Mr Ferry told the court that Hadar’s injuries had since healed but that she had been left with a mark which was almost invisible. Through her mother, she had sued Dublin Bus and the Garda commissioner.
Judge Groarke, after examining Hadar’s eyebrow, said the mark was still there and still visible, and it was difficult to say that she had made a full recovery.
“I can see the mark, even though it is slight, but we do not know how it may interfere with the growth of hair on Hadar’s eyebrow in later life,” Judge Groarke said.
He adjourned the application for six weeks, seeking the court’s approval of a €10,000 offer, and said that, in the meantime, a medical report specific to the mark on Hadar’s eyebrow should be obtained.
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