10-year wait for compensation falls flat as judges revoke €258,000 indemnity

A former truck driver with lifelong issues following a 25-metre plunge from a motorway bridge has heard that a compensation order for €258,000 in damages will now not be paid to him.

Appeal court judges explained it wasn’t the competence of regular courts to decide on the matter.

Last year, Santarém judges considered it was Brisa motorway concession’s duty of care to install crash barriers that guarantee road-users do not career through them in the event of a violent accident (click here).

In Pedro Lobo’s case, the HGV he was driving suffered a burst tyre which propelled him into the barriers, and then over the edge.

It took rescue workers over three hours to cut him loose from the wreckage of his truck, and then “several years of physiotherapy” before Lobo managed to prove medical opinion wrong and reach the point where he could walk.

Nonetheless, he is still dependent on a cane, and the last decade has been one of indeniable struggle.

Now, he faces taking the case to the Supreme Court. But if the Supreme Court agrees with the appeal court judges, Lobo will be ‘back at the beginning’, say reports. The only avenue available to try once more for compensation would be the administrative and fiscal court of Leiria, many kms from Lobo’s home.

Tabloid Correio da Manhã concludes that appeal court judges nonetheless accepted the original judgement that the crash barriers “were not strong enough to retain the truck” and that Brisa had failed in its duty of care.

[email protected]