A woman who missed out on her holiday after she fell down a set of temporary stairs at Birmingham International Airport has won £28,000 in compensation from Thomson Airways.

Sheila Gilling, 69, was boarding a flight to Lanzarote when the accident happened. She slipped and fell head first down the stairway, which was being used to connect the boarding gate and the aircraft. It had not been connected properly and a leak in the roof meant that the surface and the handrail were wet from the rain.

Mrs Gilling suffered a dislocated shoulder and a torn hamstring. The accident also had a psychological impact and she suffered repeated flashbacks to the incident. As a result, she was unable to return to work for nine months.

After bringing a personal injury claim, an out-of-court settlement of £28,000 was agreed with the airline operator. This was to compensate Mrs Gilling for her pain and suffering, lost earnings and the aborted holiday to Lanzarote.

The claim was brought under the Montreal Convention on International Carriage by Air 1999, which unifies the rules governing air carrier liability in the event of injury to passengers or damage to baggage or goods during international journeys. This includes injury to passengers on board the aircraft or in the process of embarking or disembarking. The Convention applies strict liability to airline companies and it is not therefore necessary to prove negligence in order to make a claim. The Convention has the force of law in the UK.

If you have been injured in an accident through no fault of your own, you may be entitled to compensation. We can advise you on the specific circumstances of your case.