The family of a Dublin resident has been awarded €1 million in compensation after the grandmother of the family sustained major brain trauma as a result of being struck down by a car.
In September 2011, Elena Schiopu (60) was crossing the Morehampton Road in Dublin. While she was pushing her granddaughter in her buggy, she was struck down by a car that was attempting to undertake the car that had given way to Elena as she was crossing.
Elena thought that she only suffered cuts and bruises as a result of the accident, so returned home with her granddaughter, who was unharmed in the incident. Some time after the accident, Elena developed slurred speech and experienced weakness in her limbs, and went to hospital for an examination.
Elena was then admitted to hospital, where her condition deteriorated so rapidly that she was forced to remain in the intensive care unit for seventeen days. Eventually, Elena lost all of her ability to communicate, and was diagnosed with a quadriplegic brain injury. In 2012, Elena was transferred to a nursing home for specialist care.
On behalf of her mother, Elena's daughter claimed pedestrian accident brain injury compensation against the driver of the vehicle. The driver-Eamon McElwain of Donnybrook in Dublin-contested the claim.
In their action, Elena's family argued that McElwain had undertaken the stationary car when he should have realised that it was not safe to do so. McElwain argued that he had not been speeding nor was he guilty of dangerous driving, and Elena herself was negligent as she had failed to look for oncoming traffic as she stepped out from behind the stationary car.
After much negotiation, a settlement of €1 million of compensation for pedestrian accident brain injury was agreed upon by both sides. Ms Justice Mary Irvine of the High Court in Dublin was told of the circumstances of the accident, and of Elena's life-changing and tragic injury. The judge approved the settlement for the family, and extended her sympathies to them for this "distressing case".