The Chiayi District Court awarded NT$144,018 (US$4,700) in compensation yesterday to a Taipei woman who was injured while disembarking from a train in Alishan (阿里山) in 2005.
The court ruled that the 30cm gap between the train platform and the Alishan forest train made it difficult for passengers to disembark safely. The court said the Chiayi Forest District Office, which had jurisdiction of the forest train at the time of the accident, should compensate the woman because of the train station’s “flawed design.”
The court said the woman, surnamed Wang, rode the famous forest train to see the sunrise in the mountain recreation area early in the morning on Oct. 10, 2005.
When disembarking at Chushan station in dim light, she failed to see the 30cm-wide platform gap, which caused her to stumble and injure herself. The court also said the platform did not have slip-proof tiles.
Wang had asked for NT$2.56 million in compensation to cover her medical expenses, medical equipment, caregiver expenses and loss of income from missed work as well as emotional distress.
The court, however, said the woman should shoulder part of the responsibility for the accident, arguing she had failed to heed warnings about the platform gap that were posted inside the train.
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