Burn victim free to seek compensation

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ST JOHN’S, Antigua – The Court of Appeal, yesterday, dismissed an application to strike out the claim of a man seeking compensation for burn injuries sustained when an allegedly defective welding hose he purchased from a local company exploded.

The attorney for the company, AMW Welding & Industrial Supplies Ltd, had asked the court to dismiss Randy Josiah’s claim because it was filed more than three years after the incident and this timeframe falls outside what is stipulated in the Limitation Act.

However, the appellate court said while it might be a fact the claim was three years and three days after the incident, the court must be allowed to enquire how and when the claimant became aware of the process of pursuing the matter.

In dismissing the company’s application and granting Josiah leave to appeal, the appellate court also pointed out that the said Limitation Act provides for “an enlargement of time.”

Josiah, who was represented by attorney Ralph Francis, is now free to go after the company for special and general damages arising out of use of the reportedly defective welding hose that allegedly exploded during use on June 15, 2010, causing first degree burns to his body.

The decision of the court of appeal overturns the mid-January ruling of acting Master (adjudicator) of the court Agnes Actie, who had struck out the claim, saying it was statute-barred.

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