One in the eye!

Posted: 26th May 2016

Crewkerne footballer Kelvin Charles is still counting the cost after the sports goggles he was wearing during a match earlier this season broke causing a nasty injury. 

Kelvin, aged 27 at the time, needed five stitches to his left eyebrow after the prescription goggles broke just nine minutes into the Crewkerne Rangers game at Wadham School at the beginning of last September.Kelvin 

A keen footballer, Kelvin - pictured right - (Kelvin is the one on the left!) is also an everyday wearer of prescription glasses.  He spends a lot of his time refereeing matches in the course of which he feels reasonably safe wearing his standard specs but when he is playing he naturally likes to have a reasonably good chance of being able to see the ball, without risking damage to his spectacles or injury to himself! 

Kelvin became aware of the sports goggles and went to check them out at Specsavers in Chard.  “With the risk that goalkeepers face of contact from both the ball and opposing players, these goggles seemed the ideal solution and they were advertised for precisely this sort of activity,” he explains. 

After purchasing the goggles in November 2014, Mr Charles used them on only a handful of occasions during the rest of that season where, for the most time, he was refereeing.  He was excited about his return to goal on Saturday 5 September 2015. 

Injury1But his dreams, and goggles, were shattered when only a few minutes into the game the ball was deflected off another player and hit him in the face.

Much to his surprise, the goggles broke and a laceration to the left eyebrow bled so profusely that Kelvin was concerned that the injury was serious.  “A centimetre or so lower, and I might have lost the sight in my eye”, he reflected. “I did also have a small cut on my eyelid”.

As it was, the cut was bad enough to require five stitches which were in place for over a week to be followed by a period of 5 weeks during which he was unable to play football. Kelvin has been left with a prominent scar on his left eyebrow. 

GogglesKelvin took the goggles, which cost him £79, back to Specsavers.  They offered to repair the goggles for him but only if he paid a further £39.

He told us, “I was shocked.  I had been assured that these goggles would withstand the force of a baseball and so were clearly safe for football.”

Kelvin came to Williamsons and we agreed to take his case.  Proceedings are soon to be issued alleging breach of implied contractual terms of satisfactory quality and fitness for purpose. 

Specsavers’ insurers have denied liability on behalf of their insured.  They say that the goggles comply with the relevant manufacturing standard.

See also - WilliamsonsProduct liability claims.