Thursday, 13 Aug 2020

Female passenger injured in car accident awarded €92,000 against driver

A woman who was injured when she was a secondary school student travelling as a passenger in a car has been awarded €92,000 by the High Court against the driver.

Shannon Ryan (now 20), was 16 when she was a back seat passenger in the car driven by Jack Gill near Limerick on December 26, 2014.

Ms Ryan, of Cappaghroe, Nenagh, sued Mr Gill of Newtown, Nenagh, both Co Tipperary.  

Liability was not an issue in the case and it was before Mr Justice Charles Meenan for assessment of damages.

The judge said a photo of the car taken after the accident showed the severe nature of the impact.

Ms Ryan was taken to University Hospital Limerick where there were serious concerns for her welfare and she was intubated for a number of hours.  

While in hospital, she developed severe migraine and became quite agitated.  She was discharged three days later, on December 29.

The judge said a CT scan showed no evidence of brain injury but she suffered from recurrent headaches, accompanied by photophobia.  

She had suffered from migraine during her early childhood but had not experienced it for two to three years before the accident.

Mr Justice Meenan said medical evidence showed she continues to suffer from headaches and photophobia once or twice a week.   A neurologist said these symptoms are consistent with post traumatic headaches.

The judge found Ms Ryan to be an honest and truthful witness who did not seek to exaggerate or embellish her various complaints.

At the time of the accident, she had been active in sports and played camogie to a high level.  Her injuries meant she can no longer play and her overall social life has been curtailed, the judge said.  Medical experts regarded her prognosis in terms of continuing pain as “very guarded”, the judge said.

He assessed damages for pain and suffering to date and into the future, along with special damages, at €92,115.

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