Teenager injured after goalpost fell on her secures €52,000 settlement

Teenager injured after goalpost fell on her secures €52,000 settlement

By Irish Times
Friday, 5th March 2021
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A teenage girl who required stitches to her forehead after a goalpost on which she was swinging fell on her has secured some €52,000 under a settlement of her High Court action.

Angelica Riabusko, suing by her mother Marina, of Charlesland Park, Greystones, Co Wicklow, sued Wicklow County Council over the incident, which happened on the pitch at Arklow Leisure Centre on August 27th 2016.

Mr Justice Garrett Simons was told that while the girl, now aged 17, then aged 13, was out for a walk with her mother, the gate of the pitch, where they had not been before, was unlocked and they went in.

Ms Riabusko started to swing from the goal post, it fell on her, she hit her head off the ground and had to have stitches to her forehead.

Counsel for Ms Riabusko said a full defence had been filed in the Circuit Court and it was decided to bring the case to the High Court because of the possibility his client may decide to have cosmetic surgery in the future on her forehead.

He said the defence had pleaded contributory negligence and raised issues whether Ms Riabusko and her mother should have been in that section of the centre that day.

That impacted on the size of the settlement offer but his side considered there was a significant risk in proceeding to trial and was seeking approval of the offer, counsel said.

The judge said the girl had fallen while swinging from a goalpost in the presence of her mother and serious issues were raised concerning liability and contributory negligence.

The €50,000, plus special damages of €2,091, was close to the full value of the case, with a discount for contributory negligence, he said.

There was a likelihood she would have done worse if the case went to trial and, in the circumstances, he would rule this “very good” settlement, he said.