Saturday 22 October 2016

Mum gets €115k after slip on zoo manhole cover

Gwen Leost Kane Picture: Collins
Gwen Leost Kane Picture: Collins

A woman who dislocated her ankle when she slipped on a manhole cover in Dublin Zoo has been awarded almost €115,000 by the High Court.

Gwen Leost Kane was in plaster for seven weeks and on crutches for 16.

Mr Justice Anthony Barr was satisfied that Ms Kane had given a fair and accurate account of her symptoms and disablement from the time of the accident to the present.

She had suffered extreme pain in the fall on her son's first birthday in 2011 and cannot now take part in Breton folk dancing or cycle or walk long distances, he said.

She was on a family day out at the zoo and was pushing her son Gabriel's buggy outside the sea lions' enclosure when the accident happened.

Ms Kane (43), of Beechdale Court, Firhouse, sued the Zoologicial Society of Ireland over the fall on June 12, 2011.


She claimed there was a failure to adequately supervise the premises to ensure that the sea lions' enclosure, its surrounding amenities, visitor walkways and viewing areas were safe for persons expected to walk in wet weather.

Ms Kane also claimed that an accumulation of rainwater had been allowed on a pedestrian walkway and the metal manhole cover.

Mr Justice Barr was told liability was admitted in the case and it was before the court for assessment of damages only.

The judge said Ms Kane continues to experience pain daily in her right ankle.

He said she is not able to walk long distances nor to ride her bicycle, and this has been a cause of distress to her as she used to participate in charity walks and cycling events.

The judge awarded a total of €105,000 in general damages and for pain and suffering to date and into the future. He allowed special damages of €9,988, bringing the total to €114,988.

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