Women slipped on ‘yellow substance’ at Limerick shopping centre

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

A MOTHER-of-two who sprained her wrist after slipping and falling at the Jetland Shopping Centre on her wedding anniversary is to receive substantial damages.

A MOTHER-of-two who sprained her wrist after slipping and falling at the Jetland Shopping Centre on her wedding anniversary is to receive substantial damages.

Rachel McNamara from Thomondgate sued Dunnes Stores, Savills and ABC cleaning services and supplies Ltd as a result of the incident on October 25, 2008.

During a hearing at Limerick Circuit Court, Ms McNamara described how she fell in the main mall of the shopping centre on October 25, 2008.

She said she and her husband had just walked up the stairs from the underground carpark when she slipped after standing on a “yellow substance” which she said was similar to fabric conditioner.

Ms McNamara said she put out her left hand to break her fall and a “left out a scream” as she fell.

Although, she was offered assistance by staff at the shopping centre after falling, the plaintiff told her barrister Emmett O’Brien that she only sought medical attention later that evening after her wrist began to swell up.

Judge Tom O’Donnell was told the swelling was so severe that x-rays could not be performed until several days afterwards.

While Ms McNamara did not sustain a fracture, she experienced severe pain for several weeks afterwards and her arm was in a sling for three months.

“For the first few months, I couldn’t do anything with my left hand at all,” she said adding that her husband had do most of the housework.

Ms McNamara said she also had to give up coaching underage camogie at Na Piarsiagh GAA club, for whom her two daughters play.

The court was told the defendant continued to have difficulties with her grip until the following summer but that she has gone on to make a substantial recovery.

Lawyers representing Dunnes Stores, who own the shopping centre, argued they were not liable for what had happened as they had engaged property management company, Savills, to manage the centre on their behalf.

Judge O’Donnell agreed and dismissed the case against Dunnes Stores.

Following the conclusion of the case, the judge said he was satisfied that both Savilles and ABC cleaning services and supplies had been negligent on the day and had been responsible for the accident.

The judge ruled that they each shared equal liability in the case.

However, despite finding against the defendants, the judge commended them for their actions on the day.

After delivering his finding and following discussions between lawyers representing the various parties, the judge was informed that a settlement had been reached in favour of Ms McNamara.

Details of the settlement - believed to be a five figure sum - were not disclosed.