Case involving boy who nearly drowned in hotel pool settled for €2.5m

Then 11-year-old child was found submerged after mother had left water

The boy, who cannot be identified, had been on a winter break with his mother and grandmother when the accident happened in 2014.

The boy, who cannot be identified, had been on a winter break with his mother and grandmother when the accident happened in 2014.

 

A boy left with a moderate brain injury in a near drowning accident in an hotel pool has settled his High Court action for €2.5 million.

The boy was not able to swim at the time of the accident in 2014. Then aged 11, he was found submerged in the pool.

The boy, who cannot be identified by order of the court, had been on a winter break with his mother and grandmother when the accident happened.

His counsel Liam Reidy SC said the family had gone to the swimming pool which was in a separate building to the hotel.

Counsel said the boy could not swim and was in the children’s pool and in the main pool with his mother.

CCTV footage showed the child joined the mother in the main pool on one or two occasions and she led him back to the children’s pool, counsel said.

The boy was in the children’s pool when the mother got out of the main pool to get dressed and she thought he would follow her, he said.

The boy’s grandmother was poolside and “momentarily could not see him”, counsel said.

The child was found submerged in the pool by the father of another child, was resuscitated and was transferred by helicopter to Temple Street Children’s Hospital, the court heard.

He spent nine weeks in Temple Street and later transferred to another hospital for a prolonged stay.

Now aged 17, he had through his mother sued the hotel as a result of the accident. It was claimed there was failure to take any or any adequate precautions for the safety of the child while using the pool, failure to have a lifeguard on duty at the time he was in the pool and failure to notice the boy had got into difficulties in the swimming pool.

All the claims were denied.

Mr Reidy told the court the issue in the case was whether there should have been a pool attendant and the hotel would allege the mother had signed a document saying she was taking full responsibility for her son in the pool.

Counsel said the child was with his mother and grandmother and 11 years of age at the time.

Mr Reidy said the boy had a mild learning difficulty before the accident and now has a moderate difficulty. He has made a remarkable physical recovery and can now walk unaided. The €2.5 million settlement represents half the value of the case.

Approving the settlement, the judge said he shared the grave concerns of counsel if the case proceeded to trial and he had no hesitation in approving the settlement.