A schoolboy who it was claimed suffered Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after the school bus he was in swerved into oncoming traffic and flipped over into a ditch after the driver fell unconscious at the wheel has settled his High Court action for €40,000.
Kyle Mullins was almost 13 years of age and on the way to school when the accident occurred in the townland of Caherconlish, Co Limerick three years ago. More than thirty students and two adults were taken to hospital after the incident on February 7th, 2018.
Kyle Mullins , Sandylane , Boher, Co Limerick had through his father Dave Mullins sued Curtin Executive Travel Ltd of Ballyneety, Co Limerick which operated the school bus service on behalf of Bus Eireann which was also sued.
It was claimed that the bus in which Kyle was travelling crossed the road into oncoming traffic, collided with a fence, an oncoming car and an ESB pole before ending up in a ditch.
Kyle, who was sitting in an aisle seat in the middle right-hand side of the bus it is claimed, was terrified as the driver appeared to have lost consciousness.
When the bus flipped into the ditch, the boy fell across his friends across the aisle.
He was helped out of the bus through a broken window and lost his shoes in the process. He was brought to hospital, and he had bruising on his left side after the accident and some soreness in his left ankle, back and shoulders.
His counsel Owen Donnelly BL instructed by Hogan, Dowling, McNamara solicitors said the boy suffered anxiety and sleep disturbance after the accident. He suffered post-traumatic stress disorder and was unable to play guitar or sports for six months after the accident though he has since gone back to both.
It was claimed there was an alleged failure to properly control or manage the bus and the boy had been allegedly caused to apprehend his own death or serious injury. It was further claimed the boy witnessed the sight of injured, upset and bleeding children.
The defendants alleged contributory negligence on the boy’s behalf for allegedly failing to wear the seat belt provided.
In an affidavit to the court Kyle’s father Dave Mullins said he believed his son was very scared, and he had described the incident as seeming “unreal”.
Approving the settlement Mr Justice Garrett Simons said it was a very serious incident, but the boy had made a good recovery. The judge said it was very reasonable offer.