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Pub landlady awarded £200,000 after losing toes

Client stories

Tracy O’Donnell, a pub licensee lost two toes in a tragic accident involving a faulty gas cylinder in 2009 and her life was turned upside down.

Immobile and in excruciating pain, Tracy rightly knew that her trauma was worth significant compensation to reflect her new adjustments to work and personal life. After approaching Express Solicitors, her feelings were confirmed and we secured £200,000 for her injuries.

Faulty gas cylinder severs toes

In 2009, Tracy and her husband Patrick were running their pub when she had a tragic accident. The recession had affected the business badly so the couple were already splitting shifts to save on staffing costs, which only made the knock on effects of the impending injury all the more distressing.

When Tracy was taking her regular delivery of gas bottles at her pub, the handle for one of the full cylinders snapped off and the whole thing fell on her foot from a height. Her little toe was immediately cut off and her fourth toe was crushed and left hanging, needing to be amputated soon after.

Tracy was unable to work for three months due to her injuries. At an already difficult time for the business, this accident couldn’t have happened at a worse time. Thankfully, her family and friends rallied around to help out with the running of the pub and the household chores.

Sleep was also problematic and Tracy would have nightmares about the accident: “I would wake with a start in bed and that jumping would cause more pain, it was a horrible cycle to be in. I ended up with depression and having panic attacks.”

A compassionate legal approach wins the day

After Tracy approached the Express Solicitors team to represent her in her claim for compensation, we were never going to turn down her case. This woman’s life had been turned upside down and her professional and personal life was suffering as a result.

On top of helping Tracy navigate the legal path to compensation, Sharon Denby and Clair Carlo, who led the case, organised cognitive behavioural therapy for Tracy which, in her own words, “really helped her come to terms with her injuries.”

Tracy was very positive and complimentary about her experience bringing forward her claim: “This was a very distressing accident but everyone at Express Solicitors got me through it with their fantastic emotional support as well as their legal advice. The accident turned my life upside down, but Express Solicitors helped me turn it around again,”

“To Sharon and Claire, my case was more than a job and my welfare was their main concern. The whole experience without them would have been unbearable, but they were there for me emotionally and I always knew I could call them if I needed someone to talk to.

“Whenever I contacted the firm I was always put through to somebody that could help. Everybody was polite and I really couldn’t have asked for a better service. I felt like I knew the team personally and in traumatic times it meant everything to me.”

Sharon and Clair were delighted to help Tracy secure a payment of £200,000 in damages following her accident. Taking into account the physical trauma, impact on her professional life, and personal struggles, the amount represents a huge win for Tracy.