Personal injury specialist demonstrate value of second opinion after securing £90,000 following slip in the pub
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Recalling events which led to slip in the pub garden
In her own words, Tammy Nightingale recalls the day of the accident: “I was at the pub with friends for a charity event. It was a pub I’d visited regularly but, on this occasion, we were there to watch a number of bands. Quite early on into the evening, a friend of mine got a bit upset and walked out. I went out looking for her, but my friend went out the front, while I went out the back. What I didn’t realise at the time was she’d drove home. Unable to find her, I headed back and as I’d come down the steps at the back of the pub, which I realised after the fall were covered in moss and were poorly lit. I slipped down the majority of the steps.”
Reporting of personal injury accident
“Luckily one of my friends had wondered where I was and eventually found me on the floor. They helped me up and supported me while we walked me around to the garden area and sat me on a chair. The landlady came out, which was all denied at the hearing, and sat and spoke to us to find out if I was ok. Nothing was written in the accident report book and I wasn’t offered an ambulance or anything.
We just sat there and had a drink. I’d had a drink prior to the accident, but I was sober as I was alternating the alcohol with water, like I’d planned as I knew it would be a long night.”
Attending hospital for diagnosis of personal injury
“The next day, Sunday, my foot was really bruised, swollen and painful. However, I decided that having had prior experience of my local A&E on weekends would rest at home and attend the hospital if required on Monday.
Attending A&E on Monday and reporting my injuries I was sent for an X Ray. It turns out that they actually X-rayed the wrong part of my foot – they’d expected it to be damaged around the Achilles heel area and so they missed the actual damage at the first opportunity.
“I was sent for an X Ray. It turns out that they actually X-rayed the wrong part of my foot – they’d expected it to be damaged around the Achilles heel area and so they missed the actual damage at the first opportunity.”
However, because of the severe bruising they suspected a fracture and decided to put it in plaster for 11 days.
“After 11 days, I returned and was then told it was tendon and ligament damage. Obtaining a new diagnosis, which I queried at the hospital, further investigation was overruled by a doctor on duty. He already felt the hospital had explored a second opinion and instead I was to have another cast fitted and be sent for physio. I was in plaster for another 10 days and in a support boot after that, on and off for months.”
Reasons for seeking compensation for personal injuries
“I knew I couldn’t return to work any time soon and I’d already taken three months off.”
Tammy owns a barber shop in Crowborough. Not only did the injury to her foot make the daily 30 miles commute each way from her home in Eastbourne to the shop difficult, she was unable to stand for any great length of time, making her job difficult to perform.
“Three months in and I wasn’t getting any rest bite from my foot, nor was it showing signs of healing and needing to be back on my feet all day for my work as a barber.
“This wasn’t an ideal situation, as I knew I couldn’t return to work any time soon and I’d already taken three months off. I also knew that when I did return, I would be facing limited hours that I could do each day, without facing discomfort from the swelling.
“My husband, at the time, said maybe I should seek compensation to cover some of my expenses, as he was pretty sure a pub should be a safe environment for you to have a few drinks in.
“Given the amount of time I had off work and feeling worried about the future, I explored personal injuries solicitors online and opted to call Express Solicitor after reading the great reviews.”
Obtaining a second diagnosis revealed extent of personal injuries sustained
“A year on from the accident, I faced my first surgery to remove the shattered bone and undertake a ligament and tendon repair.”
“Having engaged Express Solicitors to explore my claim for compensation, they very quickly requested a second diagnosis and I was sent to a foot and ankle specialist who performed an MRI scan. Having pushed for one and being knocked back at the hospital I was more than happy to attend further appointments.
Unfortunately, this uncovered the true extent of my accident and uncovered that I had actually shattered the subtalar joint in my left foot.
This is the bridge between my foot and ankle and I learnt that all the treatment I had tried was never going to make a difference. I needed surgery to correct or at least try to fuse things back together. A year on from the accident, I faced my first surgery to remove the shattered bone and undertake a ligament and tendon repair. Although successful at the time,
a year later, I had to have the pins taken out as it was really irritating. The skin was really thin on my foot and it made general walking really painful.”
Difficulties faced from personal injury
“I was in severe pain, struggled with my mobility, and often walked with a hunchback.”
“Having two young children at home and not being able to support them or participate in any activities was really difficult. I just wasn’t able to stand for long periods of time. I was in severe pain, struggled with my mobility, and often walked with a hunchback.
This eventually caused secondary back issues. I was then attending lots of appointments not only for my foot but my back too and paying to have all these different, alternative treatments such as Thai massage to keep the tendons subtle, but as I learned wasn’t aiding my recovery.”
Process of obtaining compensation for personal injury
“At times it did get a bit much, with all the requests for information and specialist appointments, but it is what you have to do. I was kept well informed by the team at Express Solicitors and just opted for the best appointments that suited me and my family.
“What did amuse me during the process was learning at the hearing that the defence was trying to make out that I and my friend, who left early that night in her car, were both really drunk and could hardly stand up. They also obtained through another friend’s Facebook account a picture of me with a glass of champagne in my hand at another event to discredit me and suggest I was a big drinker. As it happens, the event’s person who managed the whole charity night, for my defence, actually wrote a letter to confirm that when he’d spoken to me, I was actually fine. This also discredited the defence statement obtained from a member of staff who provided a statement, stating that we were intoxicated. My friend drove home after only having one drink.”
Outcome of compensation claim following slip in pub
Commenting on the case, Jonathan Flattery from Express Solicitors added: “After attending a joint settlement agreement we successfully secured £90,000 in compensation for Mrs Nightingale. Having handled countless cases involving slips, trips and falls it was the ability to secure the expert second opinion, obtain solid witness statements and proven loss of earnings that was the key to the success of Mrs Nightingale’s case.”
Support offered by Express Solicitors for slip in pub
“They were brilliant. It was a long process over a few years but I was more than happy with the outcome at the end.
The compensation enabled me to make improvements to my barber shop, get some new things for the house and also, I kept some in savings.
Outcome of the accident in the pub
“I probably will have to have further operations in the future.”
“The specialists predict that I will end up having to have a couple more operations in the future. I’ve not much muscle left in my left leg and my foot is flat, positioned inwards. As it doesn’t bend in places it is supposed to bend, this will put pressure on my other joints and I probably will have to have further operations in the future.”