Supertram traffic accident compensation battle continuesSeptember 1, 2010
A motorist, who suffered brain damage after his car went out of control on wet Supertram tracks, has won the latest round in his battle for compensation .
William Roeof Norton Avenue, Sheffield, has so far only received an interim payment of £200,000, after he was seriously injured in 1995 on the Supertram tracks in Sheffield city centre. Mr Roe’s brain injuries meant he was left with no recollection of the accident but an eye witness saw him lose control of his Ford Sierra and collide with one of the pylons that carry power to the trams. Since the accident Mr Roe has needed full time care which has been provided by his wife.
The Court of Appeal has now agreed that he can sue Sheffield city council as well as Supertrams builders and operators and it is hoped that Mr Roe’s total compensation could exceed £1 million
Lord Justice Kennedy has called for a swift end to proceedings after Mr Roe has already fought a long legal battle for compensation . He said it will now be possible for Mr Roe to be compensated in full for his injuries. The judge said: “It seems to me that the time has come for the proceedings to be brought to a complete conclusion and by that I mean all proceedings.”
A previous court of appeal decision ruled that highway authorities must keep stretches of road containing tram tracks safe for traffic. This meant that Supertram’s operators were liable forcompensating Mr Roe. They fear this will now trigger a flood of claims from other people injured in similar ways. Mr Roe is just one of 77 casualties, including two deaths, which have been blamed on contact between vehicle or cycle wheels and tram tracks, between August 1994, when Supertram was launched, and January 1997.