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Claim for Slip and Fall in Dunnes Stores Restaurant Resolved in Court

Posted: June 11th, 2014

A claim for a slip and fall in Dunnes Stores restaurant has been resolved in the High Court after a judge found Dunnes Stores liable for an injury to an employee.

On 14th July 2011, Dorota Michalowska (29) had been clearing tables in the Dunnes Store restaurant in Clonmel, County Tipperary, and was pushing a trolley full of dirty crockery back to the kitchen area when she slipped on a frozen chip that had been left on the floor and fell heavily – badly injuring her knee as she landed.

Dorota´s knee immediately started to swell, and she sought medical attention for a serious soft tissue injury, which ultimately left her incapacitated for six months and unable to work for thirty-five weeks. After recovering from her injury, Dorota contacted a solicitor and made an injury compensation claim for a slip and fall in Dunnes Stores restaurant against her employers.

The Dunnes Store in Clonmel denied its liability for Dorota´s knee injury on the grounds that Dorota had been working on food production on the day of her accident, and if frozen chips had fallen onto the restaurant floor prior to the time of her accident, it was most likely that Dorota had dropped them herself – thus making her the author of her own misfortune.

Dorota´s claim for a slip and fall in Dunnes Store restaurant proceeded to the High Court, where it was heard by Ms Justice Mary Irvine. After hearing evidence from legal representatives of both parties, Judge Irvine ruled in favour of Dorota with the reasoning that, had Dorota dropped the frozen chips herself – and then spent time clearing crockery from the restaurant tables – the chips would have defrosted by the time Dorota slipped on them and fell.

As there were two other restaurant assistants helping with food preparation at the time of Dorota´s accident, it was more than likely “on the balance of probabilities” that one of Dorota´s colleagues had dropped the chips and either not seen the hazard or neglected to pick them up because of the pressure of work. Consequently the judge decided, Dunnes Stores were liable for Dorota´s injuries through the negligence of their staff.

Judge Irvine commented that Dorota would likely suffer from arthritis in the future because of her knee injury, and awarded her €82,750 in resolution of her injury compensation claim for a slip and fall in a Dunnes Stores restaurant which included €20,000 for future pain and suffering. The judge gave Dunnes Stores leave to appeal the verdict on condition that €52,750 of the compensation was paid immediately.

Categories: Shop Assistant Injury Solicitor

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