Contributory Negligence in Highway Claims

It will probably be argued that the Claimant was simply not looking where she or he was going or ought to have known that the pothole in the road was there.

In Dingley V Bromley LBC (2000) the Claimant’s claim was discounted on the basis as she had been aware of the particular pothole, which caused her accident. Knowledge of the general poor state of a particular area of the highway although not the particular defect, will have a similar effect. In Brown V Edinburgh City Council the Court found the Claimant 20% contributory negligent.

When it is argued that your client simply ‘lost control’ of his or her bike for no good reason, remember Rogers V (1) Cambridge Water PLC (2) Groupbridge Ltd (2003) The Court found in response to the Defendants’ allegations that the Claimant lost control when she braked to avoid a cable in the road, that it was unlikely that an experienced cyclist could easily fall off her bicycle without something there to cause a problem.

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