herald

Tuesday 28 March 2017

Fall at D4 hotel an 'accident waiting to happen'

Delia Manning. Photo: Collins
Delia Manning. Photo: Collins

A 69-year-old businesswoman who suffered a triple fracture of an ankle after she slipped and fell in a Dublin hotel has been awarded €56,250 damages.

Circuit Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke said the entrance floor to the Herbert Park Hotel, in Ballsbridge had been impeccable and maintained to the highest standard.

However, Delia Manning should not have been allowed to enter through the emergency exit doors, he said.

Judge Groarke said evidence showed the floor became slippery when moisture was carried under people's shoes. There was no mat at the emergency doors to trap any potential moisture and "it was an accident waiting to happen", the judge said.

Ms Manning, of Assumption Terrace, Kinsale, Co Cork, told the court that she had stayed at the hotel with her son and grandson in August 2014 to attend the RDS Horse Show.

The show's last day, August 10, was wet and it ended early. They decided to go home and were leaving the hotel car park but the barrier would not lift.

Fracture

She had gone back into the hotel to check her ticket had been validated when she slipped and fell forward, feeling pain in her left ankle.

Ms Manning had been attended to by hotel staff before being taken by ambulance to St Vincent's Hospital in Dublin, where X-rays revealed a fracture in her ankle.

The court heard she wore a plaster cast for several weeks and was no longer able to walk long distances and may develop arthritis in the future.

She sued Herbert Park Hotel Limited, trading as Herbert Park Hotel, and Sheelin McSharry (Ballsbridge) Limited, of Embassy House, Herbert Park Lane, Ballsbridge, for negligence.

The defendants had denied liability and alleged Ms Manning had used the emergency doors because the main entrance was crowded with a group of tourists and she had been rushing when she slipped.

Judge Groarke said Ms Manning, who suffered a "very nasty and extremely serious" injury, may have been distracted. Initially awarding her €75,000 damages, he reduced it by 25pc for contributory negligence.

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