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Compensation for an Injury at a Health Club Awarded by Judge

May 13, 2015

A court in Dublin has awarded a thirty-year-old hotel supervisor €30,000 compensation for an injury at a health club.

On 13th November 2011, Timea Babos had just come out of the sauna at the West Wood Club in Dublin when she decided to go for a swim. Timea was a competent swimmer and dived straight in. However, the depth of the pool was only 1 metre 35 centimetres (around four feet) and, as she dived in, she hit her face on the bottom of the pool – breaking her two front teeth.

In pain and bleeding profusely, Timea reported her accident to the reception desk before attending an evening surgery at her doctors to stop the bleeding and get a prescription for painkillers. She flew to Hungary to get crowns fitted to her two front teeth before seeking legal advice and claiming compensation for an injury at a health club.

In her claim for compensation for an injury at a health club, Timea alleged that the health club was negligent for not having a lifeguard on duty and for not displaying signs warning guests of the depth of the pool. Unusually the pool was a constant depth throughout, so there should have been some indication that it was unsafe to dive into the pool.

The West Wood Club denied total liability for Timea´s injuries – claiming that, as an experienced swimmer, she should have checked the depth of the pool before diving in. As total liability was declined, the Injuries Board issued Timea with an authorisation to pursue her claim through the courts, and the case was heard this week by Judge Jacqueline Linnane.

At the hearing, Judge Linnane heard the West Wood Club claim that Timea had chosen a dangerous and unsafe method of diving into the pool. However she also heard from a forensic witness that there were inadequate markings around the pool to warn guests of the shallow depth and a lack of supervision around the pool area. The judge dismissed claims that Timea was partly to blame for her injury and awarded her €30,000 compensation for an injury at a health club.