Compo de­mand for eye dam­age

The Gold Coast Bulletin - - NEWS - ALEXAN­DRIA UTTING alexan­dria.utting@news.com.au

A GOLD Coast fa­ther is su­ing a re­tail fitout and an elec­tri­cal com­pany for al­most $500,000 af­ter he in­jured his eye on a dan­gling elec­tri­cal ca­ble while work­ing on a fit out at Surfers Par­adise’s Mark build­ing.

Broad­beach tiler Daina John Wells, 44, this month launched ac­tion in South­port Dis­trict Court against Re­tail In­dus­tries Pty Ltd and Ruby Elec­tri­cal Pty Ltd af­ter an ac­ci­dent that al­legedly oc­curred at the Orchid Ave build­ing in April 2015.

He is su­ing both de­fen­dants for a to­tal of $454,247.18 af­ter he stood up from grind­ing the floor of a re­tail premises and a ca­ble “with metal wires ex­posed” that was hang­ing from the ceil­ing touched his left eye, the claim states.

An em­ployee of Re­tail In­dus­tries al­legedly told Mr Wells he stood on the ca­ble, which was looped to the ceil­ing with tape, and pulled it down, the claim states.

“I should have fixed that,” he is al­leged to have said to Mr Wells fol­low­ing the in­ci­dent.

It wasn’t un­til June when Mr Wells was rid­ing his bike on a bush track at Hinze Dam that he re­alised his vi­sion had been se­ri­ously im­paired, the claim states.

He al­leges he was rid­ing when sun­light re­flect­ing through some trees made his vi­sion “strobe” caus­ing him to fly head­first into a tree.

Mr Wells now has scratches to his left eye af­fect­ing his retina, lens and cornea, he claims.

He also al­leges a fur­ther spine in­jury and fore­head scar­ring he sus­tained af­ter the Hinze Dam ac­ci­dent was caused or con­trib­uted to by the eye in­jury he sus­tained at the Mark build­ing.

Mr Wells, who is the sole carer for his daugh­ter, is now re­quired to wear an eye patch or sun­glasses when he is in bright light.

He has im­paired vi­sion dizzi­ness and dis­ori­en­ta­tion, the claim states.

The fa­ther has been un­able to work as a tiler since the in­ci­dent and the claim states he will be “sig­nif­i­cantly re­stricted in his abil­ity to un­der­take his pre-in­jury so­cial and em­ploy­ment ac­tiv­i­ties”.

Of the $454,247.18, Mr Wells is claim­ing sums for gen­eral dam­ages, fu­ture eco­nomic loss and hospi­tal and med­i­cal ex­penses.

Shine Lawyers Gold Coast gen­eral man­ager Kimberly Allen, who acts for Mr Wells, said the ac­ci­dent has had a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on both his and his daugh­ter’s lives.

“Be­ing the sole provider of his daugh­ter, our client tried hard to go back to work but he can no longer op­er­ate at the level he needs to,” she said.

“It’s put his fam­ily’s fi­nan­cial se­cu­rity at con­sid­er­able risk and he should be com­pen­sated for that.”

Both de­fen­dants are yet to lodge a de­fence.

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