Tuesday, August 1st, 2017
At a proof in the All Scotland Personal Injury Court, the pursuer was a cyclist who was injured in an accident when her bicycle collided with a bus being driven by a bus driver (the second defender, acting in the course of his employment with the first defenders at the time). The bus driver was held not to be in breach of his duties to take reasonable care and the defenders were assoilzied. Sheriff Reith held that the accident was caused entirely by the fault of the pursuer for failing to watch where she was going and suddenly veering to her right, without looking, and colliding with the front nearside of the bus who was overtaking her at the time. Although there was evidence that the bus driver could have allowed more space to his right in his overtaking manoeuvre, it was held that there was no reason he ought to have done so as he had left sufficient space in his overtaking manoeuvre to pass her whilst remaining in his side of the carriageway. Further, the pursuer failed to prove what a reasonable gap ought to have been in the overtaking manoeuvre. The Sheriff held that to find the bus driver liable for what he could have done amounted to strict liability and imposed a counsel of perfection on the bus driver which he did not require to comply with. Rather, the test was whether he should have moved further to the right to fulfil his duty to take reasonable care. The Sheriff held that he did not require to do so in all the circumstances.
A full copy of the opinion can found here.
Robin Cleland of Compass Chambers represented the defenders.
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