Europe

Berkeley balcony collapse families reach partial settlement

Six students were killed when a balcony collapsed in Berkeley, California Image copyright AP
Image caption Six students were killed when a balcony collapsed in Berkeley, California

The families of six people killed and those injured in a balcony collapse in Berkeley, California have reached a settlement with some of the firms that constructed the building.

The balcony collapsed on 16 June, 2015, killing five Irish students and one Irish-American.

Seven other Irish students were critically injured.

A Californian district attorney decided last year not to bring any criminal charges in relation to the incident.

The students who lost their lives were 21-year-olds Eoghan Culligan, Eimear Walsh, Niccolai Schuster, Olivia Burke, Lorcán Miller and Ashley Donohoe, a 22-year-old Irish American.

The group were celebrating a 21st birthday at the time of the balcony collapse.

Image caption The victims - Top row, from left: Ashley Donohoe, Eimear Walsh, Olivia Burke. Bottom row, from left: Eoghan Culligan, Lorcan Miller and Niccolai Schuster

The families of the victims as well as the seven injured people had brought legal actions against dozens of companies involved in the construction, management and maintenance of the Library Gardens apartment complex.

They have reached a settlement with some of the companies involved in the construction phase, but legal action will continue against the remaining firms.

The money paid out will remain confidential.

In a statement, the Donohoe family said they would continue to push for changes to the laws so that a similar event could not occur again.

Eustace de St Phalle, the family's lawyer, said that the "amounts paid will never restore health or lives of the students but the payments reflect an effort to maximally compensate the victims within the means of the wrongdoers".

Related Topics

More on this story