Court urges meaningful engagement in dispute over compensation for truck driver

Court Urges Meaningful Engagement In Dispute Over Compensation For Truck Driver
Roman Cios sustained multiple fractures to his arms and left leg, a perforated duodenum and a pancreatic injury in the collision, the court was told. Photo: PA Images
Share this article

High Court reporters

A judge has urged parties to "meaningfully engage" in a High Court assessment of damages case in which the defendant is disputing the amount of compensation sought by a lorry driver who suffered horrific injuries in a head-on collision.

Roman Cios (65) was seriously injured when his lorry was hit head-on by another heavy goods vehicle which veered on to the wrong side of the road on September 21st, 2020, on the N24 Carrick-on-Suir to Clonmel Road in Co Tipperary.


Mr Cios (65), of Brooklawn, New Ross, Co Wexford, sued the vehicle owners, Heaney Meats Catering Ltd, with a registered address at Greenhills Road, Dublin.

Mr Justice Paul Coffey urged the sides to engage following cross-examination of Mr Cios and the presentation of video evidence.

The defendant claims the evidence calls into question Mr Cios's alleged disability which had led to claims that he now needs a single storey home, rather than the two-storey dwelling he currently lives in, and an adapted car.

The judge said there seemed to be very little dispute about the medical evidence, and the court now had Mr Cios' response to the video evidence, adding it seemed to him that the parties should engage meaningfully to see if the issues could be narrowed.


"The battle lines have now been drawn and it behoves the parties to engage with a view to achieving a settlement," the judge said.

Fatal collision

Opening the case, Michael Counihan SC, for Mr Cios, told the court that the driver of the other vehicle died as a result of his injuries while Mr Cios was seriously injured.

He said Mr Cios was rushed to hospital following the crash, where he spent a number of weeks in intensive care. His injuries included multiple fractures to his arms and left leg, a perforated duodenum and a pancreatic injury.

Liability is admitted but, while accepting Mr Cios' arm and upper body have been left badly affected, it is disputed that his mobility is affected by the injuries to his lower limbs.


Mr Cios told the court, through a Polish interpreter, that he has problems with balance when walking as a result of the incident and was unable to use the stairs at home without assistance. He now has a bedroom downstairs, the court heard.

He claimed he had only returned to driving the family car three or four months ago, explaining that his wife sometimes has to assist him in and out of the vehicle and someone has to be with him at all times when he was driving.

He also said he has been unable to return to professional driving, but the court heard he recently renewed his Polish licence to drive articulated vehicles and was certified by a Polish doctor to do so.

Mr Cios claims he would have continued working until he was 70 had it not been for the collision.


The court heard is severely restricted in his ability to walk and wants to buy a single-storey house so he does not require assistance in going upstairs.

The defence alleges there is no medical evidence to support his claims about his mobility or that he will require to use a wheelchair in the future.

It is also disputing other aspects of the claiming, including €48,000 for an adapted car because he says his current vehicle is too low and he has difficulty getting in and out of it.

Video evidence was played to the court of Mr Cios getting into his car on two occasions between April and October 2022, and also last week.


Moira Flahive SC, instructed by Declan O'Flaherty of Tormey Solicitors LLP, for the defendant, put it to Mr Cios that the videos showed not only was it some 14 months ago, not three or four months ago as he claimed, since he was able to resume driving, but that he had no problem getting in and out of the car or driving himself.

Mr Cios said sometimes his wife has to assist him getting in and out of the car, and even when she did not, she was always available to assist him.

Counsel also put to him, in relation to his loss of earnings claim, that there was no guarantee his company would continue to employ him after the normal retirement age of 65. He replied that before the collision, it was his intention to continue until he was 70 as others have done it, adding that he enjoyed working.

The case continues on Thursday.

Read More

Message submitting... Thank you for waiting.

Want us to email you top stories each lunch time?

Download our Apps
© 2024, developed by Square1 and powered by