© The Irish Independent
A 13-year-old schoolgirl, whose head became trapped in automatic doors on the Luas, was today awarded €25,000 damages in the Circuit Civil Court for personal injuries.
The court heard that on Valentine’s Day 2008, Aoife Heron was travelling from Connolly Station to Jervis Street in Dublin with her mother, Elaine, and her younger sister, Kate, who was in a buggy pram, when the accident happened.
Barrister Michael Coen said that as the family were boarding the Luas train the doors closed on the buggy pram, leaving Aoife alone inside the train, her mother on the platform and the buggy caught in the doors.
Mr Coen told the court that the doors eventually opened and Aoife, who was six-and-a-half-years-old at the time, had tried to walk through the doors to exit to join her mother and sister on the platform.
The doors had closed again as Aoife walked through, trapping her head. She had been very distressed and an ambulance crew, which had been called to the scene, had treated her head injury.
Circuit Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard that Aoife attended a GP who diagnosed that she had suffered a soft tissue injury and bruising to her head.
The court heard that the wound had left a mild small scar on Aoife’s forehead. She had developed a fear of travelling in the Luas, which may need to be treated through psychotherapy sessions.
Through her mother, Elaine, of Edenmore Crescent, Raheny, Dublin, Aoife sued Veolia Transport Dublin Light Rail Ltd, for negligence and breach of duty.
Mr Coen told the court that following talks between the parties, the company, which had entered a full defence to Aoife’s claim, had made a €25,000 settlement offer. Judge Groarke approved it.