Giullietta Galli-Atkinson v Seghal: CA 21 Mar 2003

The claimant’s daughter was fatally injured in car accident, dying shortly after. The mother came upon the scene, witnessed a police cordon at the scene of the accident and was told of her death. She later saw the injuries at the mortuary and suffered psychiatric reaction.
Held: Her appeal succeeded. The aftermath could be seen to include more than one component. The test was as to proximity. Latham LJ explained that the deceased’s mother’s visit to the mortuary could not be excluded from the events regarded as a part of the aftermath of the accident. Those events stretched from ‘the moment of the accident until the moment [the mother] left the mortuary’. In this case there could be seen to be one unbroken chain of events between the discovery of the body and the events at the mortuary. An event might be made up of a number of components as could the aftermath ‘provided that the events alleged to constitute the aftermath retain sufficient proximity to the event’.
Lord Justice Thorpe, Lord Justice Latham, Mr Justice Wilson
[2003] Lloyds Rep Med 285, [2003] EWCA Civ 697
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedMcLoughlin v O’Brian HL 6-May-1982
The plaintiff was the mother of a child who died in an horrific accident, in which her husband and two other children were also injured. She was at home at the time of the accident, but went to the hospital immediately when she had heard what had . .
CitedAlcock and Others v Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police HL 28-Nov-1991
The plaintiffs sought damages for nervous shock. They had watched on television, as their relatives and friends, 96 in all, died at a football match, for the safety of which the defendants were responsible. The defendant police service had not . .
CitedHambrook v Stokes Brothers CA 1925
The defendant’s employee left a lorry at the top of a steep narrow street unattended, with the engine running and without having taken proper steps to secure it. The lorry ran violently down the hill. The plaintiff’s wife had been walking up the . .
CitedBourhill v Young’s Executor HL 5-Aug-1942
When considering claims for damages for shock, the court only recognised the action lying where the injury by shock was sustained ‘through the medium of the eye or the ear without direct contact.’ Wright L said: ‘No doubt, it has long ago been . .
CitedPage v Smith HL 12-May-1995
The plaintiff was driving his car when the defendant turned into his path. Both cars suffered considerable damage but the drivers escaped physical injury. The Plaintiff had a pre-existing chronic fatigue syndrome, which manifested itself from time . .
CitedNorth Glamorgan NHS Trust v Walters CA 6-Dec-2002
A new mother woke in hospital to see her baby (E) fitting. E suffered a major epileptic seizure leading to coma and irreparable brain damage. E was transferred to a London hospital and the following day the claimant was told by a consultant that E’s . .

Cited by:
CitedTaylor v A Novo (UK) Ltd CA 18-Mar-2013
The deceased had suffered a head injury at work from the defendant’s admitted negligence. She had been making a good recovery but then collapsed and died at home from pulmonary emboli, and thrombosis which were a consequence of the injury. The . .
CitedLiverpool Women’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust v Ronayne CA 17-Jun-2015
The respondent was an experienced ambulance driver. His wife underwent emergency treatment at the appellant’s hospital. He had claimed as a secondary victim for the distress he suffered witnessing her suffering.
Held: The hospital’s appeal . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 09 January 2021; Ref: scu.182326