Mushroom picker's injury case withdrawn after film shown of her cycling

A mushroom picker has withdrawn a High Court claim for a back injury she said she suffered due to not being provided with the proper equipment for her job.

Ewa Rolbiecka (51), Cré Na Mara, Arklow, Co Wicklow, sued her employer Michael Kennedy after she fell while using unsuitable low stool trying to pick from a high mushroom shelf in Kennedy's farm, Arklow, on January 3, 2016.

Mr Kennedy denied she was not provided with proper equipment and pleaded contributory negligence.

Ewa Rolbiecka. Photo: Collins.

She said she has been unable to work since because of pain in her back. She came down hard on her right leg onto a concrete surface and suffered nerve compression in her back, it was claimed.

As a result, she could not do household chores liking vacuuming for more than five minutes, wash dishes or clothes.

Last May, she told one doctor she was unable to cycle or walk because of the ongoing pain. She told another doctor last October she had problems lifting, carrying, pushing and pulling things.

However, on the second day of the case last Friday, the defence introduced a film shot by a private investigator showing her cycling a year after the accident.

Another piece of film, shot last January, showed her pushing her grand-daughter around in a pram to and inside a local shopping centre.

Under cross-examination by Finbarr Fox SC, with Phlip Fennell BL, instructed by solicitor Jennifer O'Riada, she insisted the film only showed her on good days.

On bad days she could not do these things and she also had to take pain killers.

The case was adjourned to today to allow her legal team to see the unedited versions of the film.

Following the viewings, Paul Burns SC, for Ms Rolbiecka, told Mr Justice Bernard Barton the case was being withdrawn with no order as to costs.

That means both sides pay their own costs of the three-day case.


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