Air hostess's torment after breaking leg in seven places during turbulence

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A former air stewardess who was unable to continue with her dream job after enduring a horrific leg break in seven places due to severe turbulence, has received a six-figure compensation settlement. Eden Garrity, 31, endured the life-changing injury whilst on duty during a Thomas Cook flight from Cuba to Manchester that ran into a violent Atlantic hail storm.

The force of the turbulence sent the flight shooting upwards by 500ft, causing Eden to be pinned to the floor and suffer a snapped ankle. Following the traumatic event, Eden was rendered completely immobile for two months and had to undergo several surgeries as well as arduous rehabilitation.

It comes with turbulence in the national spotlight. There have been two incidents with injuries in the past week - involving Singapore Airlines and Qatar.

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Regrettably, she sustained nerve damage which makes it excruciating when standing for long durations, preventing her return to her much-loved role as a crew member. While the payout offers substantial financial support, Eden admitted that it provides little consolation for losing her dream career.

She expressed: "It has left me bitter, I'm resentful for it. It's just frustrating. It was the best job in the world and I feel like I've lost a piece of my personality."

Witnessing extended friends soaring the skies while being perpetually earthbound, exhibited to her that career flying is a path she can never embark on again, stating "You see people you're friends with and they're travelling in the skies and I'm not, I'm forever ground grounded. I'll never be able to fly for work again."

Living with a sense of loss, being restrained in what she can do despite having a family and a son, she mourns for the missed opportunities of creating memories and exploring different nations.

Reflecting on her ordeal she lamented, "If not for the accident I'd have been able to fly in the future and it's horrible."

Despite acknowledging the importance of the payout she concluded on a sorrowful note, "I appreciate the payout but it doesn't bring back what I've lost. It helps in terms off getting my own property, but I'm 31 and I have the rest of my life ahead of me and I can't do what I want to do."

Eden, from Leigh, Greater Manchester, was left lying on the aircraft floor for an hour as crew members scrambled to clear seats following severe turbulence during the flight. She found herself sprawled across the back row of the plane in excruciating pain and was eventually whisked off to hospital immediately after landing in Manchester, a gruelling seven hours later.

The doctors likened the force of the plane's floor striking her foot to being hit by 'a sledgehammer'. Her injuries were extensive: five breaks in her fibula, a tibial fracture, a fractured side of her foot, and a cracked ankle bone.

Lawyers from Thompsons Solicitors argued staff should have been made aware the flight would encounter poor flying weather and additional precautions should have been put in place. While Thomas Cook's insurers denied responsibility for her injuries, Eden has received an undisclosed compensation care package worth six figures.

Injury law expert Neil Richards, who represented Eden, said: "The circumstances surrounding the incident in which Miss Garrity sustained her injuries should have been foreseen. The issue of inflight safety, especially when working in certain geographical regions including the Caribbean, carries a known health and safety risk.

"Turbulence also represents an obvious and serious danger to all those onboard, and especially to airline staff who are required to work in and around the cabin in such environments."

Unite legal director Stephen Pinder said: "I am pleased with the result achieved for our member and their family. Unite will be taking the lessons learned during this case back into our industrial work to help ensure other airline staff are protected from similar incidents."