THROUGH THE ARCHIVES: Bridge was three feet to low, court is told

The village of Tempo in Co FermanaghThe village of Tempo in Co Fermanagh
The village of Tempo in Co Fermanagh
From the News Letter, November 13, 1952

An allegation that an overhead bridge on the Enniskillen-Tempo road was only 11ft 11in above the roadway, despite the stipulation when it was built that it should be 15ft above, was made in the Queen’s Bench Division of the Ulster High Court before Mr Justice Sheil.

The case was one in which a widow from Ballyreagh, Tempo, on behalf of herself and her five children claimed damages for the death of her husband who had died in an accident at the bridge on Enniskillen fair day, October 10, 1950.

Mrs Abraham claimed that her husband while travelling in a cattle lorry owned by the Ulster Transport Authority (UTA) had been struck on the head as the lorry passed under the bridge, and that the driver of the lorry had been guilty of negligence as a servant of the UTA.

Evidence was given that the dead man had been standing on a gate inside the lorry at the back and was one rung higher up than two companions.

As the lorry passed under the bridge he was struck by it and fell, severely injured, among the 15 head of cattle the lorry was carrying.

The dead man’s wife also claimed that the Sligo, Leitrim and Northern Counties Railway Company had negligently maintained the bridge.

The Fermanagh County Council and the Enniskillen Borough Council were also brought into the case by reason of pleading that successive road improvements had lessened the height of the bridge.

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