Woman awarded €48,000 for back injuries suffered in Lanzarote holiday fall

Sarah Miller was on an ‘adventure’ with her son when she fell nearly three metres onto a walkway

A woman who fell nearly three metres and hurt her back as she strolled in her hotel grounds with her young son on the first day of a Spanish holiday has been awarded €48,000 by the High Court.

The amount includes the cost of Sarah Miller’s €2,400 10-day family holiday to Lanzarote which she booked through lastminute.ie.

The Lanzarote package holiday included flights, airport transfers and accommodation at the H10 Lanzarote Princess Hotel, Playa Blanca, Lanzarote.

The 43-year-old businesswoman and mother of two had told the court she was on “an adventure” with her four-year-old son on a path from the hotel pool on New Year’s Day 2020 when the accident happened. Suddenly, she fell to a walkway below.

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“My left foot took the brunt, I couldn’t get up. I had significant pain in my back, and I told my son to go back and get granny and granddad.”

Two people then helped her and she was taken to hospital where she was told she had a burst fracture to her spine and she was put on morphine for four days for the pain. She had to lie in the flat of her back for several weeks and was also put in a brace.

‘My family had to go back home after, but my father stayed on a further two weeks until I could travel home,” she told the court.

She said she later had headaches and dizziness and had to wear the back brace for three months.

Her counsel David Kennedy SC told the court that Ms Miller has suffered a very serious accident and the family holiday had been effectively ruined.

Ms Miller (43) of Kinsealy, Dublin had sued Bravonext SA with registered offices at Chiasso, Switzerland which is the operator of the online travel agency known as lastminute and which trades online in Ireland as lastminute.ie.

Her family had booked a holiday online to travel out to Lanzarote on December 29th, 2019 and return to Dublin on January 8th, 2020.

In the proceedings, it was claimed there was a failure to provide any or any adequate warning of the danger and a failure to erect any or any adequate form of warning signage.

It was further claimed the service provider failed to take all reasonable care to ensure that area of the grounds in question was reasonably safe, and was maintained in a reasonably safe condition for visitors .

Judgment had already been granted in default of appearance by Bravonext.

In her ruling, Ms Justice Emily Egan said Ms Miller was an extremely honest, conscientious and careful witness who, if anything under-stated her symptoms.

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