Jones v Livox Quarries Ltd

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Jones v Livox Quarries

[1952] 2 QB 608; [1952] 1 TLR 1377; (1952) 96 SJ 344

NEGLIGENCE, CONTRIBUTORY NEGLIGENCE, FORESEEABILITY, CAUSATION, DAMAGE AS A RESULT OF ONE’S OWN FAULT

Facts

The workmen in a quarry and a few slow-moving vehicles were proceeding to the canteen for a lunch break. The way was around a stationary excavator turning almost at a right angle. The plaintiff jumped on one traxcavator – tracked vehicle with a speed of 2.5 miles, and stood on its towbar at the back of it, holding on to two uprights so that some parts of his body were behind the traxcavator. The workers at the quarry were instructed not to ride the quarry vehicles. The traxcavator stopped at the corner to change gear. A dumper, driven by a servant of the quarry owners followed the traxcavator round the stationary excavator and crashed into its back. As a result, the plaintiff was severely injured. The Queen’s Bench found contributory negligence on behalf of the plaintiff. He appealed to the Court of Appeal on grounds that he did not cause the injury.

Issue

Did the plaintiff suffer ‘damage as a result partly of his own fault’ within the meaning of s. 1(1) and 4 Law Reform (Contributory Negligence) Act 1945?

Held

The appeal was dismissed.

(1) A person is guilty of contributory negligence if he ought to have foreseen that if he did not act as a reasonable man, he might get hurt. In his consideration, he must take into account the possibility of others being careless.

(2) Once contributory or actionable negligence is proved, the person guilty of it, must bear the proper share of responsibility for the consequences.

(3) The consequences do not depend on foreseeability, but on causation.

Accordingly, the plaintiff suffered ‘damage as a result partly of his own fault’ within the meaning of s. 1(1) and 4 Law Reform (Contributory Negligence) Act 1945.

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