Holidaymaker wins €19k damages after nose broken by airport door

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A man whose nose was broken by an electronic door at Dublin Airport has been awarded €19,000 damages against Air Lingus.

Thomas Smyth, 63, and his wife Evelyn were on their way to Tenerife when the incident occurred at Gate 106 in Terminal One in January 2011, reports the

The Circuit Civil Court this week heard that an electronic door at the gate was opened by an Aer Lingus flight attendant, who inserted an identity card and code into an electronic pad.

The door was magnetically timed to close after exactly 30 minutes, but boarding sometimes took 40 minutes.

Mt Smyth said he was walking through the open space when suddenly without warning he was hit by the door.

He went to hospital, and was able to continue his holiday two days later. But the court heard the trip was ruined for the couple, and that Mr Smyth had a broken nose and two black eyes while away.

Barrister Gerard Groarke said both Aer Lingus and Dublin Airport Authority had been sued, and damages of €19,00 had been agreed between the defendants.

The defendants asked Judge Jacqueline Linnane to decide which was to blame.

Judge Linnane ordered the agreed damages only against the airline, and said there had been no defect found in the door.

According to the, she said: "If Aer Lingus had felt at any stage that the 30-minute electronic time gap for boarding purposes was insufficient they should have asked the airport authority to extend it."

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