herald

Wednesday 15 August 2018

Miracle boy who plunged 30ft from store escalator

A 12-year-old boy has narrowly escaped death after plunging 30ft from an escalator in a Dublin shopping centre.

Brandon Giltrap (12), from Clondalkin, ended up with a fractured jaw, skull, and two broken wrists.

He was playing with friends and balancing on the handrail of the escalator at the Liffey Valley Shopping Centre last Wednesday when he fell off.

Brandon's dad, James Kennedy, told the Herald that doctors revealed to him that it was a miracle that the 12-year-old wasn't paralysed or brain damaged.

"He's been very, very lucky. It's a bit of a miracle. He's badly smashed up. He was holding on to the belt of the escalator and (in a game they were playing) what you're supposed to do is jump off after six or eight feet and it's to see who is the bravest."







Smashed

"But he went up on it to the food court and he was a metre behind his friend, and when his friend got up to the top he tried to swing his leg around and Brandon fell then."

"Under the circumstances he's doing extremely well. He doesn't have any spinal or brain damage.

"He has a hairline fracture of the skull, but they sent a scan off to Temple Street to see if it was safe to operate on his wrists, and it is.

"He has two smashed wrists. He landed on his hands and his wrist shot into his hand and his bone was sticking into his hand.

"He landed on his chin as well which is a miracle, because the doctors say that if he fell down on his legs there's a 75 per cent chance that he would have had spinal damage."

Brandon was admitted to Crumlin Hospital where he had operations on his teeth, jaw, wrists, and skin.

"He has a fractured jaw and his teeth were smashed in. He needs to have skin grafts, work done on his bone structure, and some of the nerves on his teeth need to be removed because they'll just die off and cause problems."

James wants to highlight the dangers of children playing at heights, and he is also calling for greater health and safety measures in public spaces.

"My son shouldn't have been on the outside holding on. But you have a moving escalator that people and children are moving up on, and it's an accident waiting to happen."

A spokesperson for Liffey Valley Shopping Centre said she was unable to comment because the incident is under investigation.

hnews@herald.ie

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