Lady left paralysed after being ‘catapulted’ from bed during sex, sues mattress company
Claire Busby suffered life-changing damage to her spine after she toppled off the end of the “defective” bed while switching positions during intercourse.
The 46-year-old from Maidenhead, Berks, appeared at the High Court in a wheelchair yesterday, where she is taking legal action against Berkshire Bed Company, trading as Beds Are Uzzz.
The court heard the bed was one of five delivered to Ms Busby’s then home in August 2013 when she was renovating the property in Theresa May’s constituency. Ms Busby, a successful businesswoman in the property industry, was injured just a week after the bed’s delivery.
She told the court that she was kneeling in the middle of the bed performing a sexual act on her partner, John Marshall, when she decided to move position and “swung her legs” from underneath her, before laying back on the bed.
At that point, she said the bed gave way and she fell off the end, landing dangerously on her head.
“I was positioned kneeling over him,” she told Judge Barry Cotter QC.
“I was kneeling over him and my right hand was touching him, maybe my left hand was touching his leg. I was half way down the bed.
“I spun around, I put my hand down and then I felt like I was catapulted off the back of the bed,” Ms Busby told the court.
“My head hit the floor, I fell to the side and then I heard like a spring in my body snap,” she added.
Ms Busby claims the two halves of the divan bed, which made up the base, were not properly fastened together and two “gliders” – or feet – were missing from the end of the bed, creating a height difference between one end and the other.
Her barrister Winston Hunter QC said she expected the mattress to support her weight as she lay back on the bed, but that it failed to do so and she continued moving “backwards and downwards”.
He told the court: “It is the claimant’s case that the point at which she left the bed is precisely the location where the different height of the two divans was at its maximum.
“It represented the area where the mattress was most likely to ‘fall away’ due to the fact that it was partially unsupported.”
Mr Hunter said it was “accepted that the particular circumstances of the accident are unusual”, but it was enough for there to have been “some foresight of some loss of balance in the use of the bed” for the firm to be found liable.
Berkshire Bed Company denies culpability for Ms Busby’s injuries, with its lawyers arguing the bed was properly assembled at the time of delivery. They also said that even if the two gliders were missing by the time of the accident, that would not have caused the bed to lose balance in the way suggested by Ms Busby.
Neil Block QC, for the firm, said: “It is overwhelmingly likely that, whatever her actions, they were too close to the edge of the bed and she simply lost balance and toppled backwards.”
The firm sells super king-size divan bed bases for as much as £1,500 online, with the cheapest costing £147.
The hearing at the High Court continues.
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