Chelsea Roach, a 30-year-old tourist, is suing Mexican excursion company Vallarta Adventure S.A. De C.V. for millions in compensation at the High Court in London.
Roach lost her arm in a dirt buggy accident during an off-road excursion near the Puerto Vallarta resort in Mexico in 2019.
Her £25,000 Polaris RZR buggy flipped over, almost severing her arm at the elbow and leaving it hanging at the joint.
Surgeons were unable to save her limb.
Roach claims that she had to carry her right arm to an ambulance using her left hand and could have died from blood loss if her friend had not made an emergency bandage using a ripped-up T-shirt.
Roach’s lawyers argue that the accident was caused by the negligence and/or breach of statutory duty of Vallarta Adventure, S.A. De C.V.
The company contests any liability to pay damages and the case may end up being tried in Mexico if it is decided that there is insufficient connection between the accident and the UK legal jurisdiction.
The judge has called for evidence about the validity and effect of the waiver and jurisdiction clauses in an agreement signed by Roach before the accident.
He also wants to see evidence about the availability of case funding in Mexico and the experience of Mexican courts in dealing with catastrophic personal injury claims.
Roach’s accident occurred while on holiday in Puerto Vallarta, a Mexican beach resort city in the Bay of Banderas in the state of Jalisco.
The area is popular with US and Canadian expats and has been hailed as the number one gay beach destination in Latin America.
Under UK law, Roach’s claim could be worth millions, but her potential payout might be much less if her case is ultimately heard in Mexico.