A 32-year-old man who suffered serious brain injuries after the car he was a passenger in crashed into a tree has settled his High Court damages action for €4.65 million.
The award was made in favour of former car salesman Dane Craigie who was the passenger in a vehicle that skidded off the road and hit a tree.
The court heard the crash occurred on 17 September 2008 at Bellinter, Navan Co Meath on a part of the public road where construction and excavation works were being carried out.
Mr Craigie suffered severe traumatic brain injuries from which he has never fully recovered.
Following the accident he was rushed to hospital in Navan, from where he was ultimately transferred to Beaumont Hospital, Dublin where several surgical procedures to relieve pressure on his brain were carried out.
He spent a long time in intensive care. He now resides at a nursing home and requires ongoing care.
Arising out of the incident Mr Craigie of Warrenstown, Drumree, Co Meath sued several parties for alleged negligence, nuisance and breach of duty of care, including Meath Co Council and SIAC Cintra Ferrovial, trading as M3 Motorway Joint Venture - the company that had been carrying out the roadworks where the accident occurred.
He sought damages against the company and the council in regards to the alleged maintenance and upkeep of the public roadway where the accident occurred.
Mr Craigie further sued the Motor Insurers Bureau of Ireland (MIBI), Linda Farrell, of Kilcarn Court, Navan, who it was alleged was the driver of the vehicle on the date of the crash, the vehicle owner Kelly Mathews of Ringlestown, Co Meath, and Ray Smyth the owner of a garage at Bellinter, Navan, where the vehicle was allegedly being kept for the purpose of repair and onward sale.
He claimed those parties were responsible for his injuries due to their alleged negligence in the manner the motor vehicle had been driven, controlled, used, managed and maintained.
All of the defendants had denied the claims they had been negligent.
As part of the defence it had been argued Mr Craigie contributed to his own misfortune and had exposed himself to risk and injury because he had not been wearing a seat belt at the time of the accident.
At the High Court, Jonathan Kilfeather SC for Mr Craigie said the realistic full value of the case was in the region of €7 million.
Counsel said there were difficulties in proving liability in the case, so in the circumstances his client was prepared to accept a settlement offer of two thirds of the full value, which came to some €4.65 million.
The settlement was approved by Mr Justice Kevin Cross.
Describing the offers as "a good settlement" that he had "no hesitation in recommending", the judge also praised Mr Craigie's mother, who he said provides her son with a great level of care since the crash.