A Cork farmer who has sued after he suffered horrific injuries to his hand when it was sucked into a combine harvester has claimed for €1.65m in losses, the High Court has heard.
Gearoid Hurley agreed under cross-examination that the losses under the special damages claim includes €80,000 for dairy cows which have been sold by his father and a €55,000 tractor his father bought after the accident three years ago.
Thomas Creed SC put it to Mr Hurley he was claiming for the loss of a herd which his father had sold.
Mr Hurley replied: “Those cows would have been coming to me.”
He has claimed he was due to inherit the family dairy farm outside Bandon when he was 35 years old, but his right hand is compromised and he cannot now work as a dairy farmer.
As a result he said his sister is set to inherit the 97ac family farm which has since converted to beef. Mr Hurley has taken over a smaller 79 acres outside tillage farm near Cork Airport.
Gearoid Hurley, Mallowgaton, Bandon, Co Cork, has sued Mark Troy, an agricultural contractor of Knockroe, Bandon, Co Cork, and the agricultural company Ardkeena Agri Services Ltd, also of Knockroe, Bandon, Co Cork, as a result of the accident on September 16 2016 on land in Brinny, Inishannon, Co Cork.
Mr Hurley was working for Mr Troy at the time and was attempting to manually unclog grain from a combine harvester, when it was claimed the auger of the machine was allegedly activated by Mr Troy.
Mr Hurley has claimed he was allegedly requested to unclog the combine harvester in dangerous and hazardous circumstances and the auger of the harvester was allegedly activated in circumstances in which injury was likely to be caused.
He has further claimed there was an alleged failure to train or supervise him adequately.
Mr Hurley’s hand was pulled upwards and crushed and remained trapped for about an hour until firemen managed to cut through the combine harvester to free it.
The High Court heard liability had been withdrawn in the case. It is before the court for assessment of damages only.
In evidence, Mr Hurley said he can’t shake hands as normal and said he offers his left hand rather than the right hand which suffered the injuries. He can’t do tasks associated with dairy farming, he said, such as milking, fencing, dehorning or helping with the birth of calves.
Farmer sues contractor after hand trapped in combine harvester