McHale & Co. Solicitors Blog

Case Study: Fatal Accident on Holiday

Client went on holiday with his friend to Tenerife. They had booked flights with one agency in Sale and then accommodation with another agency in Timperley at a later date. (Travel regulations may not apply). When they arrived they went to play tennis and on returning to the apartment one went for a shower and the other went to make something for tea. There was a funny smell in the apartment and when both turned on hot water at the same time, the whole apartment blew up in flames and one ran out with his skin burning and dived into a nearby swimming pool and the other was assisted on exiting the apartment by a retired superintendant from the Greater Manchester Fire Service in the adjoining block who knew that the best thing to do was to pour cold water slowly over his skin (so as not to shock the skin too much). The man who dived into the swimming pool died 13 days later but the other survived with 80% burns!! He was a very fit man before the incident.

However when the incident was investigated by the local police the corrupt police concluded that the explosion was caused by a mobile phone battery charger overheating and neither man owned one! The owner of the apartment knew the police! I decided to hold an inquest in Manchester Coroners Court of the man who died 13 days later and the coroner concluded that the explosion was likely to have been caused by a gas leak and I then sent a Spanish speaking trainee to Tenerife with an engineer for a forensic examination of the department with the defendant representatives and the resulting joint report concluded that the explosion was likely to have been caused by a gas leak and despite the potential insurance problems the case subsequently settled for a substantial sum.