By Claire Valdini
Brain damaged Natalie Creane disputes compensation deal, court date set for April 17
Natalie Creane, the British tourist who suffered a severe brain injury after a wooden panel fell on her head in a five-star hotel in Abu Dhabi, will have her first appeal hearing on April 17.
The 34-year old was put in her sixth medically induced coma this month to protect her from the severe injuries she has suffered since the accident in 2008, according to a Facebook page set up by her family.
Emirates Palace Hotel, Kempinski Hotels and Abu Dhabi National Insurance Company (ADNIC) were ordered to pay AED200,000 (US$54,450) to Creane in February after she was hit on the head with a loose wooden panel when she opened a wardrobe door in her hotel room in July, 2008.
Creane’s family has argued that the compensation is insufficient. They say she urgently needs specialist neurological treatment that is only available at a centre specialising in traumatic brain injuries, which costs “hundreds of thousands of dollars”, as well as ongoing surgery and cognitive therapy.
A ‘Justice for Natalie’ Facebook page, which was set up by her family in 2012 and has nearly 30,000 supporters, says Creane was found unconscious by a hotel member but rather than call for an ambulance, the hotel’s duty manager drove her to a nearby hospital.
“With no prior history of such problems, she began to suffer from horrendous seizures and was suffering from the horrendous effects of a major concussion and was, therefore, incapacitated for months and months,” the page says.
Creane has since been diagnosed with post traumatic intractable refractory epilepsy and traumatic brain injury and suffers regular seizures that cause her to suddenly collapse, often causing further injuries including broken bones and fractures, her family has said.
She wasn't a tourist, just wanted to add that - she's been a resident of the UAE for almost ten years. Fingers crossed for the appeal! Justice for Natalie! Thank you Arabian Business.
Considerin the cost of medical treatment here in UAE, AED 200,000 is a ridiculous compensation amount for the nature of this injury.
AED 200,000 is nothing. We hear about the high amounts given as compensation for other incidents of which are not as extensive as this case.
Unfortunately these cases do not give much credability to the court and justice system in the country, especially in the case of a lawsuit against a local company (owner of the hotel).
Let see if justice prevails or would it be another case of a courts questionable judgement
She hasn't been paid a penny - not one penny. They didn't get ordered to pay her a thing, it immediately went to appeal by the family because the amount was so SO low. This keeps being misreported. Thank you for covering this story, but wanted to ensure the facts were accurate.