The widow of a Welsh man who died while attending a stag weekend in Galway has settled a High Court action for €250,000.
Father-of-one Sam Rowlands, the High Court heard, became disorientated after he left a Galway city centre pub to go back to his hotel and ended up on a road outside the city where he was hit by a taxi.
Mr Rowlands (30) had arrived in Galway on Friday, June 16th, 2017 for a stag weekend, but died after being hit by a taxi at Bushypark on the N59 Moycullen Road in the early hours of June 17th.
In the High Court on Monday, Mr Justice Garrett Simons was told that construction worker Mr Rowlands had spent about eight and a half hours in the public house before the accident.
His widow, Lowri Jennet Rowlands, had sued the taxi driver Imran Khan, Rahoon, Galway over the accident.
Her counsel Michael O’Connor BL told the court there was an “atrocious liability issue” in the case.
Counsel said Mr Rowlands had covered some distance after leaving the city centre pub and was observed by one witness staggering out on to the road.
The taxi driver, counsel said, was returning from dropping off a fare and counsel said according to his account, Mr Rowlands almost jumped on the bonnet of the car and appeared suddenly in front of the taxi.
An inquest into Mr Rowlands' death had heard how one motorist had to earlier swerve when a man matching the Welsh man’s description stumbled out on to the road.
Hail a taxi
Taxi driver Imran Kan, the inquest heard, was driving at 50 to 55 kilometres per hour in the 100 kilometres per hour speed zone, as there was a bend in the road and he said he was “in no rush”.
Counsel told the High Court he was “concerned about the liability position to say the least.” He said an accident investigation report said it looked like Mr Rowlands hit the car from an elevated position, which would appear to support the taxi driver’s claim.
In an affidavit to the court, Ms Lowri Jennet Rowlands said that when Mr Rowlands left the city centre pub where he had been with friends, it appears he became disorientated and lost his way. She said it appears he was attempting to hail a taxi when he was struck by a car.
She said initially there was hope and Mr Rowlands was brought to University College Hospital, Galway but his condition deteriorated. He had suffered a brain injury and she said ultimately it proved hopeless.
She said his family managed to spend time with him before he was taken off life support. The couple has a young son Joseph, who is now six years of age.
Approving the settlement, Mr Justice Garrett Simons said Mr Rowlands had been in the public house for about eight to nine hours before the accident. The judge also noted no prosecution had been brought against the taxi driver.
Mr Justice Simons said in the circumstances it was a very good settlement.