Ryanair passenger hit by luggage from overhead locker awarded €67,000

Prior to the accident 80-year-old had been very active and independent, court told

Phyllis Brady, of Inishmann Road, Gaeltacht Park, Whitehall, Dublin pictured at the Four Courts on Tuesday. Photograph: Collins Courts.

Phyllis Brady, of Inishmann Road, Gaeltacht Park, Whitehall, Dublin pictured at the Four Courts on Tuesday. Photograph: Collins Courts.

 

An 80-year-old woman whose life changed when a piece of overhead luggage fell on her on a Ryanair plane, has been awarded €67,000 damages.

Circuit Court President, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard that Phyllis Brady of Inishmann Road, Gaeltacht Park, Whitehall, Dublin 9, had been returning from Malaga in October 2015 when she was hit by a bag just after the plane had landed at Dublin Airport.

The court heard a heavy bag had fallen on her when another passenger opened the overhead locker. The bag struck Ms Brady on her face, neck and shoulder.

Liability had been conceded by Ryanair and the court was being asked to assess the amount of damages due.

Ms Brady told her counsel Michael Byrne SC, that following the incident she had suffered pain to her right shoulder and temple. She said she had felt dizzy and had to stop numerous times on her way to the medical officer in the airport.

Prior to the accident she had been very active and independent and said the incident had compromised her considerably. She was no longer been able to carry out household and life tasks to her usual standard.

Judge Groarke, in awarding her €35,000 damages for pain and suffering; €30,000 special damages and €2,366 for expenses, said that prior to the accident Ms Brady had an “extraordinarily active life”. She had been able to carry out all domestic chores and gardening and her independence had been treasured greatly by her.

He said that although Ms Brady was a very young 80 she had a difficult time in the last three and a half years. He said she had remained optimistic and had done her best to get on with her life.

She had undergone a life-changing experience and had been living with pain on a daily basis, he added.

Barrister Andrew Walker, who appeared with Audrey Mc Ginley of Ronan Daly Jermyn Solicitors for Ryanair, asked the court for a stay on the order on the basis that €35,000 be paid out to Ms Brady.

Judge Groarke said Ryanair was entitled to a stay and directed that Ms Brady, in the meantime, be paid out €45,000.