A 13-year-old schoolboy, who was hit in the face by the door-post side mirror of a passing van, suffered facial soft tissue injuries and damage to his two front teeth, the Circuit Civil Court has been told.
Judge John O’Connor heard that the boy, Richard Idowu, who will celebrate his 17th birthday on Tuesday, had been offered €38,000 damages on behalf of van driver Edward Byrne, Merrion Fleet Management and United Drug Wholesalers and Distributors Ireland.
Barrister Kevin D’Arcy told Judge O’Connor that Richard and some friends had been crossing the Ballyowen Road at Lucan, Co Dublin, and had reached what they considered the safety of the raised central reserve in the middle of the road.
Mr D’Arcy, who appeared with Lalloo Solicitors for Richard and his mother Deborah Idowu, of Liffey Dale, Lucan, said the boy was just short of his 14th birthday when the accident happened and, although a full defence had been delivered on behalf of all of the defendants he was confident the boy would succeed on liability.
He said there was a plea of contributory negligence in the case that would imply the boy may in some way have transgressed on to the roadway or had been messing and put his head forward as the van was passing.
Mr D’Arcy said the design of buses and vans with side wing mirrors meant they could protrude over a pavement area and a pedestrian with experience of city traffic would be wary of them when approaching close to a kerb.
Counsel said the boy had been knocked to the ground and taken by ambulance to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Crumlin, Dublin.
Book of quantum
He told Judge O’Connor the Book of Quantum indicated up to €12,700 for the loss of one tooth and he disagreed with the defendants’ contention that to seek €24,000 for two teeth was almost maximising the amount that one could be awarded.
“The boy is approaching adulthood and the injuries involve his two front teeth for the rest of his life and he has already undergone significant treatment and will continue to have to do so, including crowns and root canal work,” Mr D’Arcy said.
He said Richard’s injuries warranted further damages for pain and suffering and the effect the injuries had cosmetically. The settlement on offer included €8,000 for future dental treatment. The Injuries Board had assessed general damages at €30,000.
Judge O’Connor, approving the settlement offer to Richard, said the court had been provided with three detailed medical reports and he considered the €38,000 overall offer an appropriate one.