Good Samaritan suffers from unsafe McDonald’s playground

In 2010 a 5 year old boy got stuck on some elevated playground equipment at the McDonald’s store in Castle Hill.  The boy had gained access to the rear of the playground in an area he was not supposed to go and climbed up onto the equipment.  Mr Metaxoulis came to the boy’s aid.  He climbed up to where the boy was located (a height of about meters from the ground) and successfully handed him down to his parents.

Unfortunately, Mr Metaxoulis then himself fell and injured his left wrist (aggravating an old injury) and suffered a minor rib injury.

McDonald’s denied they were at fault.  A District Court judge agreed with them.  But the matter then went before the Court of Appeal, where Mr Metaxoulis won.

The Court of Appeal found that McDonald’s knew children were gaining access to the rear area of the playground but did not take adequate steps to prevent that re-occurring. They could have placed warning signs, used spring loaded hinges to ensure the relevant gate would remain closed or used a key lock on the latch (much like a pool gate).  Those simple steps would have avoided access to the area and reduced the risk of any injury.

McDonald’s was found to be negligent and Mr Metaxoulis was awarded $179,000 in injury compensation.

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For more details read the full version of the court judgment:

Metaxoulis v McDonalds Australia Ltd [2015] NSWCA 95

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