Abdul Hafezi’s comments ;
I have deliberatly headed it “lucky claimant ” as in my opinion it was unfair and unjust to expect a driver to react in such short space of time. Moreover, part of court’s duties are to laid down gidelines which would evolve into habits and customs.
A pedestrian stepping into controlled crossing when lights are against him, should be wholly responsible for the cause of the accidents.
SATNAM REHILL v RIDER HOLDINGS LTD (2012)
A bus company was found to be liable for a personal injury sustained by a pedestrian who would not have been run over had the bus driver braked on time. However, the pedestrian, who crosses when the traffic lights were red, was 50 per cent contributorily negligent as their actions had a direct link to the injury.
The bus company appealed against the decision that it was legally responsible for personal injury sustained to a pedestrian who had been run over by a bus.
The recorder held that a sensible bus driver would have noticed the pedestrian as he left the kerb. It was also found that the speed of bus was 4mph and that, the driver had braked when he should have, the bus wheel would not have run over the pedestrian- although it might have touched him.
The judgment said that there was a clear breach of duty by the driver in failing to brake as quickly as he probably should have.
The CCTV evidence shown suggested that the pedestrian had stepped off of the pavement to cross earlier than the recorder had calculated.
The pedestrian’s action in crossing the road when there was a red light showing and the bus was very close was the result of more than solely a misjudgement or a failure to check the traffic. He was unquestionably culpable and his lack of care made the traffic accident inevitable. Nonetheless, the serious injuries sustained by the pedestrian came not from the primary collision but from the wheel of the bus going over the pedestrian, which was caused by the lack of efficient braking.
Overall, the apportionment for contributory negligence was 50 per cent.