When Dr Foster suffered his famous accident in Gloucester, nobody ever questioned whether or not he was entitled to claim compensation. In this article, we’re going to use this less than serious example to illustrate a very serious point – what happens if you were to suffer an injury while out and about in public.
A nasty accident in Gloucester
As you’ll remember from the nursery rhyme, Dr Foster’s first mistake was to go to Gloucester in the pouring rain, whereupon he stepped in a puddle which appears to have been deeper than he expected.
Can he claim?
There are several issues to resolve around the Doctor’s entirely fictional personal injury claim. The first is whether or not he was badly hurt. The poem shows that he fell ‘right up to the middle,’ so clearly there is plenty of potential for serious injury, whether that was a sprain or something longer lasting. However, the poem makes no mention of whether he was injured seriously.
What it does do is tell us that he never went there again – a clear indication of long-term psychological distress caused by the incident. Perhaps he retreated into his shell and became a shivering recluse – we just don’t know. In any case, it does seem plausible to claim that this accident in Gloucester left him with some significant ongoing issues.
What’s harder to fathom is whether or not any blame could be attributed to the local council. Clearly he went out into the rain, so took on a range of significant risks for which he bears some responsibility. However, what if the puddle covered an unexpected dip or pothole that should have been clearly signposted? In that case, surely the council should have included some warning signs, or better still have fixed the pothole a little earlier than they did.
Finding a lawyer
Either way, if you find yourself in a similar position then it’s important to find out what your rights are. Whether you’ve had an accident in Gloucester or anywhere else in the country, making a claim against the local council can be a difficult business. This is partly because they are used to this kind of thing and will probably have taken precautions against it, but also because the area may well not look the same when the case comes to court as when it happened. For this reason, it will help you if you can provide some clear evidence about the incident which could be used by the courts.
Whatever happens with your claim, it’s a good idea to consult the experts at Accident Advice Helpline. Using all our years of experience, we can look into the details of your case and tell you what we think you should do to get the compensation you deserve.
To find out more about what happens after an accident in Gloucester, give our team a call now on 0800 689 0500, or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile.