The €61,500 settlement of a pothole injury compensation claim, made on behalf of a sixteen-year-old boy, has been approved by Mr Justice Kevin Cross.
When he was thirteen years of age, Dillon O´Reilly (now sixteen years old) was cycling along the road between Blarney and Killard in July 2013, when the front wheel of his bicycle hit a pothole in the road and caused him to lose his balance and fall from the bicycle. Dillon suffered a fractured wrist and injured his knee and shoulder in the accident, and he still has several scars from the cuts he sustained.
Through his father, Dillon made a pothole injury compensation claim against Cork County Council. The Council consented for the Injuries Board to conduct an assessment of the claim, which was valued at €61,500. Both parties agreed with the assessment but, as the pothole injury compensation claim had been made on behalf of a minor, the settlement had to be approved by a judge.
Consequently the circumstances of Dillon´s accident and its consequences were related to Mr Justice Kevin Cross in an approval hearing at the High Court. Judge Cross was told that Dillon had been giving a “backer” to his cousin while he was cycling along the road and, at the time of the accident, had been standing on the pedals of his bicycle when it hit the pothole in the road.
The judge commented that, while Dillon acknowledged his own part in causing the accident by giving his cousin a ride on the back of his bike, he had not done anything that any other child of his age would have done. He advised Dillon not to use tanning sunbeds and to keep out of the sun because his scars would likely be susceptible to ultra violet light sun rays.
Judge Cross concluded the approval hearing by saying in the circumstances it was prudent to accept the Injuries Board´s assessment of the pothole injury compensation claim, and he approved the €61,500 settlement – adding that if the case had gone to a hearing for the assessment of damages, the settlement of the pothole injury compensation claim would have been reduced to account for Dillon´s contributory negligence.