A man was seriously injured when he was hit by a truck while pushing his out-of-fuel car on a motorway hard shoulder, the High Court has heard.

Richard Roche-Garland, aged 42, French Lane, Stackallen, Co Meath, was pushing the car with the assistance of a ‘Good Samaritan’ motorist towards a safer spot when he was hit, it is claimed.

Mr Roche-Garlandis suing the truck owners, Furniture Link International, of Dundalk, Co Louth, and its driver, Larry Hoey.

The defendants deny the claims and say Mr Roche-Garland stepped into the articulated lorry’s path as he attempted to open the door of the car at the driver’s side on the hard shoulder.

They say he did something inherently risky and did not comply with the highway code of getting out of the car and staying on the motorway embankment while he phoned for and awaited assistance.

The incident happened just after lunchtime on May 4, 2012, on the M6 near Kilbeggan, Co Westmeath.

Mr Roche-Garland said he remembered very little except that he was pushing the car, which he had borrowed from his mother, while holding the steering wheel through an open window.

He spent six weeks in hospital having suffered severe injuries, including to both his legs, his shoulder, and head, the court heard.

Under cross-examination, he agreed he was not insured on the car at the time, but thought he was. He disagreed that he was under financial pressure because he had run out of diesel and did not have insurance.

He disagreed with the driver’s claim that he was about to open the car door and had stepped into the truck’s path when he was hit.

He accepted what he had done did not comply with the rules of the road but said he was trying to get the car and himself off the hard shoulder.

The case continues.


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