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Friday 22 September 2017

Creche worker settles claim for plastic plate fall

Natasha Carberry was looking after nine children at the time
Natasha Carberry was looking after nine children at the time

A childcare worker, who claimed she has suffered back pain since she tripped and fell on a plastic toy in a creche, has settled a €60,000 damages claim in the Circuit Civil Court for an undisclosed sum.

Natasha Carberry told the court that, in January 2015, she was called by a superior to assist in changing nappies in the baby room at Precious Minds Creche, Griffin Drive, Lucan, Co Dublin.

She said she was usually in charge of children aged between one and two years in a different room and had needed to take two children with her to the baby room, while the others were asleep.

Carberry, of Beech Grove, Lucan, told her barrister, Frank Crean, that her superior left the baby room and she had to look after six awake and three sleeping children.

Judge Brian O'Callaghan heard that, as she went to assist one of the children, she tripped on a plastic plate and fell on her right side. She had been in shock.

Negligence

Carberry (26) said she felt pain in her lower back and in her right leg.

She had later gone to her GP. The court heard she suffered soft-tissue injuries to her back.

Mr Crean said his client has ongoing pain in her back and is considering a change of career as a result.

Carberry sued Precious Minds Ltd for negligence.

She claimed the creche had failed to have regard to her safety and that the child-adult ratio had been too high that day.

Sean Walsh, a forensic engineer who gave evidence on behalf of Ms Carberry, said it was essential that staff should not be placed in unduly stressful working conditions.

The creche had denied liability and had claimed Ms Carberry had been the author of her own misfortune.

It also alleged that it was her duty to keep the floor clear.

Following a brief adjournment, Mr Crean told Judge O'Callaghan that talks had taken place between the parties and an accommodation had been found, without admission of liability.

The judge complimented the parties and struck out Carberry's claim, awarding her legal costs.

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