La Mata

A court in Elche has condemned Torrevieja council to pay 3,000 euro, plus interest for late payment, after a 61 year old woman suffered injuries when she tripped over a wooden plank on the walkway of La Mata, in August 2005.

This is the second such compensation case in a matter of weeks for Torrevieja, after they were recently forced to pay 7,000 euro compensation for failing to repair a fallen stop sign at a junction in the city.

This latest case says that the woman, who was 61 at the time, tripped over the wooden plank, which was “raised and uneven”, causing bruising to her right shoulder, knee and other body areas. The woman had to be taken to hospital by ambulance and spent a year in treatment.

The resolution makes clear that the ultimate responsibility for injuries lies with the city council, not the coastal department, as the walkway presented “a difficult and unpredictable unevenness to detect at first sight by any passerby”. The city claimed that the boards that made up the walkway, had been installed by the coastal department, but the court declared that “maintenance and good condition of the walkway was for the City administration, regardless of who had built them”.

The council had faced numerous complaints from opposition groups over the lack of maintenance in recent years, but most of the wooden walkway itself was removed by the coastal department on account of the condition it was left.

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