ProfessorMelissa A. Hale
CaseCast™ – "What you need to know"
Brief Fact Summary. Stone (Plaintiff) was struck in the head by cricket ball from Defendant’s cricket club. Plaintiff sued Defendant for public nuisance and negligence.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. Plaintiff’s injury was caused by a reasonably foreseeable risk and Defendant is liable for damages since he had a duty to take reasonable measures to prevent it.
Qualified immunity does not bar actions for declaratory or injunctive relief.View Full Point of Law
Issue. If a risk is reasonably foreseeable, is there a duty to prevent it?
Held. Yes. Judgment for Defendant.
* Plaintiff’s injury was a reasonable, foreseeable risk. Although, only on very rare occasions, perhaps no more then six times in thirty seasons, cricket balls had been hit onto Plaintiff’s Side Street. What had happened several times before could reasonably be expected to happen again sooner or later.
* It is irrelevant that no possible precaution would have arrested the flight of the cricket ball that hit Plaintiff. If cricket cannot be played on a given ground without foreseeable risks, then, it is always possible to stop using the grounds for cricket. The court failed to see on what principle Plaintiff is entitled to be required to accept the risk of Defendants cricket club.
Discussion. In this case, the court did not want to force Plaintiff to bare the burden of an unlikely but foreseeable risk of injury. The court held Defendant liable on the basis of forseeability.