A claim for quadbike accident injury compensation, made by the family of a British woman injured working in Tasmania, has been settled for Au$12 million.
In December 2011, Holly Raper from Chorley in Lancashire was just twenty-one years of age and on the adventure of a lifetime, backpacking around the world. Unfortunately, the budding photographer was seriously injured shortly after starting work at the King Island Dairy Farm in Tasmania.
Holly had been told to round up cattle and was given a quadbike to ride. However, while herding the cattle, Holly came off the vehicle and suffered a catastrophic brain injury that left her in a coma for several months.
Due to the severity of the injury, Holly is now quadriplegic. She was flown home from Tasmania in March 2013, but has to be cared for twenty-four hours a day due to being unable to move, feed herself or communicate.
Holly´s family received a compensation settlement of Au$290,000 from the Tasmanian Workers Rehabilitation and Compensation Tribunal but, as this is insufficient to pay for Holly´s medical care, her family made a claim for quadbike accident injury compensation against the owners of the King Island Dairy Farm – David and Jocelyn Bowden.
The Bowden´s denied liability for Holly´s injuries and claimed that they had been caused by her own lack of care. However, solicitors acting on behalf of the family found that Holly had not been given a helmet to wear or properly instructed on how to manoeuvre a quadbike.
During the compilation of the claim for quadbike accident injury compensation, it was also discovered that the quadbike has serious defects. The rear brakes had been disconnected, the rear wheel had been put on backwards and there was excessive wear of the steering mechanism.
A hearing to determine liability was scheduled for April. But, due to Holly´s medical experts residing in the UK, Judge Steven Estcourt flew to Manchester to hear testimony before concluding the hearing in Hobart. Ultimately, Judge Estcourt found in Holly´s favour, dismissing claims of contributory negligence and finding the Bowden´s liable for Holly´s accident.
The judge awarded Holly Au$12 million in settlement of the claim for quadbike accident injury compensation. The settlement will be put into a trust in the UK to pay for Holly´s future care.