Wednesday 21 March 2018

Cyclist sues owners after dog ran out in front of his bike

Cyclist Eamonn Reilly
Cyclist Eamonn Reilly

A cyclist who claimed he was left with a painful debilitating condition when a dog collided with his bike has settled his action against the pet's owners.

Eamonn Reilly told the High Court he still had constant deep pain in his hands after the incident, which happened when he was on a Sunday ride with a friend five years ago.

"My hands are completely crippled with constant pain," he told Mr Justice Kevin Cross.

"It drives you around the bend because you can't do the things you want to do."

Mr Reilly (53), of Rockfield Close, Ardee, Co Louth, sued the owners of the black and white collie, Michael and Philip Lynch, of Johnstown, Co Louth, as a result of the incident on May 19, 2013.

He claimed the dog suddenly and without warning raced from the house driveway and collided with his bicycle.

Mr Reilly said he was thrown from his bike, knocked unconscious and suffered a fracture to his left elbow.

He claimed there was a failure to properly secure the garden to ensure the dog would not escape on to the road.

Liability was conceded in the case and it was before the court for assessment of damages only.

The defendants contended that Mr Reilly did not suffer an injury of any significance to his right hand in the incident but in another accident in October 2013 when logs on a log pile fell on his hand.

Mr Reilly said he and a friend were cycling beside the coast on the way to Clogherhead when a dog ran out of a house.

The dog, he said, ran to his friend but Mr Reilly, who was riding at about 30kph, hit it and went over the handlebars.

"I lost lots of skin. I was sore all over," he said.

Mr Reilly said he fractured his elbow and was in a cast for six weeks. But he said his hands and ribs "were killing" him.


He said he used to be sporty but he now couldn't run, cycle or do sporting activities. He said he used to play guitar in a band but couldn't do that any more.

Cross examined by Turlough O'Donnell SC, Mr Reilly did not agree with the contention he didn't suffer an injury of any significance in the dog incident but in the log pile accident a few months later.

Following talks between the parties, Mr Justice Cross was told the case could be struck out.

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