Boy scalded by hot chocolate on Ryanair flight settles court action for €17,750

Dublin teenager’s holiday in the Canary Islands was ruined after he received second degree burns on his leg, court told

A 13-year-old schoolboy’s holiday in the Canary Islands was ruined because he had been scalded on a Ryanair flight from Dublin to his holiday destination, Judge Michael Walsh heard today in the Circuit Civil Court.

Barrister Conor Kearney, counsel for Dominik Trela, said that hot chocolate had spilled in flight on the boy’s left thigh when he had been asked by a Ryanair steward to pass a cup of hot chocolate to his cousin.

Mr Kearney, who appeared for Dominik with Griffin Solicitors, told the court that the hot liquid caused second degree burns to the front and back of his leg.

He said it was not necessary for Dominik, who sued through his father Tomasz, of Whatley Hall Apartments, Archerswood, Clonee, Dublin 15, to prove negligence but under the Montreal Convention he had to prove that an accident had occurred.

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Mr Kearney said that his colleague, barrister Kevin D’Arcy, counsel for Ryanair, had told him that the Ryanair steward involved in the incident was within the precincts of the court and would vigorously contest the case.

“If you were to prefer Ryanair’s evidence we would not succeed and, although damages of from €5,000 up to €40,000 for such an injury was indicated under personal injury guidelines, in the circumstances I am recommending approval by the court of a settlement offer from Ryanair of €17,750 damages,” Mr Kearney said.

He told Judge Walsh that the boy’s holiday in Tenerife had been spoiled as he had been unable to fully exercise. He had to avoid exposure to the sun and in taking showers Dominik had to be very cautious.

Mr Kearney said that Dominik had been treated well and given first aid by the cabin crew and on returning home had been treated by his GP.

Approving the settlement along with Circuit Court legal costs, Judge Walsh said Dominik could be at a real risk if a contested case proceeded.

“It was a nasty injury which no doubt ruined his holiday and he had been left with a very minor mark on his leg,” Judge Walsh said.

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