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Dublin: 5 °C Sunday 29 March, 2020

Passenger who suffered brain damage after serious crash awarded €4.65 million

Dane Craigie suffered severe traumatic brain injuries from which he has never fully recovered.

A 32-YEAR-old man who suffered serious brain injuries after the car he was a passenger in collided with a tree has settled his High Court damages for €4.65 million

The award was made in favour of former car salesman Dane Craigie was the passenger in a vehicle which skidded off the road and collided with a tree.

The court heard the crash occurred on 17 September 2008 at Bellinter, Navan, Meath on a part of the public road where construction and excavation works were being carried out.

Craigie suffered severe traumatic brain injuries from which he has never fully recovered.

Following the accident he was rushed to hospital in Navan, from where he was ultimately transferred to Beaumont Hospital, Dublin, where several surgical procedures to relieve pressure on his brain were carried out.

He spent a long time in intensive care. He now resides at a nursing home and requires on going care.

Arising out of the incident, Craigie of Warrenstown, Drumree, Meath, sued several parties for alleged negligence, nuisance and breach of duty of care including Meath County Council and SIAC Cintra Ferrovial, trading as M3 Motorway Joint Venture – the company which had been carrying out the roadworks where the accident occurred.

He sought damages against the company and the council in regards to the alleged maintenance and  upkeep of the public roadway where the accident occurred.

He further sued the Motor Insurers Bureau of Ireland (MIBI), Linda Farrell Kilcarn Court, Navan, who it was alleged was the driver of the vehicle on the date of the accident,  the vehicle owner Kelly Mathews of Ringlestown, Meath, and Ray Smyth the owner of a garage at Bellinter, where the vehicle was allegedly being kept for the purpose of repair and onward sale.

He claimed those parties were responsible for his injuries due to their alleged negligence in the manner they the motor vehicle had been driven, controlled, used, managed and maintained.

All of the defendants had denied the claims they had been negligent.

As part of the defence it had been argued Mr Craigie contributed to his own misfortune, and had exposed himself to risk and injury because he had not been wearing a seat belt at the time of the accident.

At the High Court Jonathan Kilfeather SC for Craigie said the realistic full value of the case was in the region of €7 million.

Counsel said there were difficulties in proving liability in the case, so in the circumstances his client was prepared to accept a settlement offer of two thirds of the full value which came to some €4.65 million.

The settlement was approved by Justice Kevin Cross this evening.

Describing the offers as “a good settlement” which he had “no hesitation in recommending” the Judge also praised Dane’s mother who he said provides her son with a great level of care since his accident.

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Aodhan O Faolain

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