The case of a young boy claiming compensation for an eye injury that he sustained on holiday has been adjourned by a High Court judge so that damages can be assessed.
In April 2006, Toby Corps (five years of age at the time of the accident) of Ashford, Kent, was on holiday with his family at the Dar Khayam Hotel in Tunisia. Toby took part in several events organised by the hotel’s “animation team” along with other children his age.
One of these events involved throwing darts at a dartboard in the gardens of the hotel. Toby was called forward to take his turn at the game. While he was doing so, the child who had thrown before him removed their darts from the dartboard, and threw one at Toby.
The dart pierced Toby’s left eye, and caused him to suffer a detached retina. Toby received emergency medical attention at the hotel, but had to have eye surgery when he returned to the UK to remove a cataract that had formed as a result of the accident.
Toby’s father-Paul Corps-made a child’s holiday injury claim for compensation on behalf of his son against the travel companies through which they had been the holiday-Future Travel and youtravel.com. He alleged that the hotel’s “animation team” had failed to instruct the children on how to play the game in a safe manner, and did not inform them that darts could cause injuries. He claimed that they had failed in their duty of care to protect Toby from injury.
Future Travel denied liability for Toby’s accident, claiming that the travel arrangements had not been booked as a package and therefore the company was excluded from liability under the Package Travel Regulations. The case was brought to the High Court in London, where it was heard by Mr Justice Bean.
Representatives of youtravel.com-through which hotel accommodation had been organised-acknowledged that the hotel’s animation team had failed in their duty of care towards Toby.
In order to allow for an assessment of how Toby´s eye injury might affect his future education and career opportunities, Mr Justice Bean adjourned the case. Early court reports would suggest that the settlement of Toby´s holiday injury claim for compensation could be in excess of £50,000.