Company director who fractured ankle on ski trip sues
Posted on 10th November 2021 at 23:21
Plaintiff claims injury sustained at resort as he had to walk with luggage on snow and ice
A company director who slipped and fractured his ankle at the start of a ski holiday in France has launched a High Court action.
Darren Clarke has sued an Irish ski operator after he claimed he fell and dislocated his right ankle when he had to walk with his luggage on snow and ice-covered streets at his ski resort in Chamonix, France, to retrieve the key for his accommodation.
Mr Clarke told the High Court he was pulling a suitcase on wheels and had two bags, including one with his ski boots, at about 10pm on a night in January 2016, when the accident happened.
“It was hard to see because of the snow. It was cold and dark. My front leg slipped. I remember lying on the ground. I came down on the suitcase and my foot was trapped under the case,” Mr Clarke told Mr Justice Kevin Cross.
Mr Clarke, who was in a French hospital for three days and had to get an air ambulance home, has claimed he was not able to work for a number of months after the incident. Consequently, his counsel, Colm Condon SC, told the court his side has claimed €102,227 in losses. But the other side contends if there were any losses they would be in the region of €9,000.
Mr Clarke (43), Friarsland Avenue, Goatstown, Dublin, has sued Tony Collins Agency Limited, with registered offices at Jervis House, Jervis Street, Dublin, and trading as directski.com.
Mr Clarke had a booking dated January 20th, 2016, for a package holiday with flights into Geneva, Switzerland, and transfers to his accommodation in the Chamonix Valley, France, as well as ski-lift passes and equipment rental.
He has claimed that when he got the bus transfer to Chamonix he and his cousin were dropped off at a certain location and told their accommodation was “right over there”. He has claimed they could not access the accommodation and had to walk to another address with their luggage to get to the reception and get a key. It is alleged that Mr Clarke slipped and fell on ice suddenly and without warning during the walk.
Claim of incorrect location
It is also claimed there was an alleged failure to transfer Mr Clarke directly to his accommodation and the men had been dropped off at the incorrect location.
It is further claimed Mr Clarke had been allowed to walk at a time and place when it was unwise, unsafe or dangerous to do so, given his absolute lack of knowledge of the location or directions to his accommodation.
Mr Clarke had to wear a leg cast and was on crutches after the accident. He has claimed his social life was greatly affected and that he had to cancel an anniversary trip to London.
It is further claimed that Mr Clarke after the incident was greatly restricted in meeting and dealing with his customers, that his business allegedly suffered a discernible reduction in turnover and consequent loss of profit for the year.
The claims are denied and the travel company has contended Mr Clarke was the author of his own misfortune. It claims he was wearing inappropriate footwear.
The case before the judge continues on Thursday.
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