Boy (6) who lacerated finger on gas fire at home awarded €30k

The Independent – December 13, 2016

A six-year-old boy, who seriously lacerated one of his fingers on a gas fire in his home, was today awarded €30,000 damages against B&Q Ireland Limited and Focal Point Fires plc.

Barrister Tracy Ennis Faherty told Judge James O’Donohoe in the Circuit Civil Court today that six-year-old Tadhg Sinammon Hanafin injured himself on the wall-mounted fire while playing at in his living room.

Ms Ennis Faherty, who appeared for Tadhg with Andrea Sullivan of Hussey Fraser Solicitors, said that in November 2011, when Tadhg was only 16 months old, he cut a finger on a sharp edge on the fire.

She said he had placed his right hand on the edge of the gas fire and sustained a cut to his hand at the base of his middle finger, severing two tendons.

Ms Ennis Faherty told Judge O’Donohoe that Tadhg had been taken to the Accident and Emergency Department of Crumlin Hospital where he was detained.  He was found to have a 100 per cent division of one tendon and damage to another and a nerve and artery.

She told the court that medical reports revealed that both tendons and the nerve were repaired under general anaesthesia before having been discharged with his full right arm in a cast which he had to wear for six weeks.

Tadhg sued B&Q Ireland Limited and Focal Point Fires, Frampton Street, London, through his father Kevin Hanafin.  His parents had been concerned about the cosmetic appearance of scars on his fingers but reported now that Tadhg uses his hand for all functions without difficulty or pain.

Mr David O’Donovan, Consultant Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon, had informed the court that from a cosmetic view the scars were likely to improve over the next several years and, when fully matured, he was not likely to have any great significant cosmetic impact.

Functionally Tadhg had made an excellent recovery.

Ms Ennis Faherty told Judge O’Donohoe that the defendants had made Tadhg a settlement offer of €30,000 and said she was recommending that the court approve of it.

Judge O’Donohoe, having viewed Tadhg’s hand during a discussion of what Santa was bringing him, said that while there was some disfigurement he thought the offer was adequate and approved the settlement.

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