Student (21) critical after his costume catches fire


A MEDICAL student was last night fighting for his life after suffering 80 per cent burns when his Halloween costume caught fire in a nightclub.

Matty Sheridan (21) from Cabinteely in Dublin, a second-year medical student at NUI Galway, was transferred to the national burns unit at St James’s Hospital in Dublin. His condition was described as critical.

He suffered the horrific injuries when a Halloween sheep costume he was wearing went on fire at Halo nightclub in Galway city centre in the early hours of Thursday morning.

The incident happened at about 12.20am in the nightclub, where some 400 revellers were celebrating Halloween.

It is understood the student’s costume was suddenly engulfed in flames.

Staff and other patrons rushed to the man’s assistance before an ambulance rushed him to University Hospital Galway.

Gardaí investigating the incident have examined CCTV footage in an effort to establish how the student’s costume caught fire.

A person was questioned in relation to the incident after presenting himself yesterday at Mill Street Garda station in Galway.

A Garda spokesperson confirmed a number of people had been spoken to in relation to the incident but there had been no arrests.

Witnesses to the incident have been asked to contact Mill Street station on 091-538000.

The nightclub issued a brief statement but did not elaborate on where the incident happened or if their CCTV system had recorded what happened.

“A young man was taken from Halo nightclub to University Hospital Galway last night after his Halloween costume caught fire. It is understood that he is in a critical condition. The cause of the incident is currently being investigated by gardaí,” read the statement.

Mr Sheridan, a sailing enthusiast who had spent the summer working in the United States, was in the second year of his medical studies at NUIG. The college yesterday issued a statement expressing shock.

“His classmates, the medical school faculty and the wider university community were shocked to learn of the tragic circumstances in which Matthew was seriously injured last evening.

“Matthew is a highly motivated, respected student who shows evidence of real leadership potential and commitment to his community. He is a very popular student who is well-loved by his classmates and peers.

“We understand that the circumstances of his injuries are still being investigated.

“A university staff member was contacted by the emergency services in the immediate aftermath of the incident and was able to provide assistance in quickly contacting Matthew’s family in Dublin.

“Our thoughts are with Matthew and his family in this very difficult situation and the medical school is available to assist in any way possible.

“Ongoing support services are also being made available to support Matthew’s classmates through this very upsetting event,” the NUIG statement read.