£5,500 compensation for client injured on DIY yard

We were instructed to claim damages in connection with an accident that occurred at a DIY livery yard on 13 November 2013.

At the time of the accident our client stabled her horses at the yard. Our client was leading her horse across the yard, followed by her mum who was leading another horse, when suddenly both horses and our client fell. Our client sustained injury to her elbow and she chipped a tooth.

A different horse had fallen in the same spot just 2 days before and the yard owner was aware that there was a problem with the guttering which had resulted in a build-up of moss and algae over spilling on to the yard area. We argued that owner of the yard had failed to take reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of our client and her property whilst on his property. It was reasonably foreseeable that an accident was going to occur. By following good practice, simple steps could have been taken to avoid the incident. These include but were not limited to repairing the guttering, unblocking the guttering or placing grit on the area of the yard affected.

Our client was a lawful visitor to the property under The Occupiers Liability Act 1957 and as such she was owed a duty of care. The duty was breached when she was exposed to a foreseeable risk of injury. In addition to the breach of statutory duty it was also alleged that it was negligent to allow the yard to become a slip hazard.

Liability was denied and court proceedings were issued. The matter settled out of court, in the sum of £5,500, 1 month prior to the hearing.