Case summaryJean was a regular shopper at East End Four Corners Supermarket, which was part of a large nationwide supermarket chain. She was there at least once a week and sometimes more often if the specials were really good. When Jean was there this week, she slipped on some grapes in aisle 3 and broke her ankle. Grapes are normally found in the fruit section of the store and the store was not sure how the grapes got there or how long they had been there. The store manager indicated that there were a number of spillages every week in the aisles in this store. Is East End Four Corners Supermarket liable in negligence for Jean’s injury? ArgumentNegligence is typically defined as the failure to apply the degree of care that a sensible, prudent person would have exercised under the conditions.
This is called contributory negligence and demonstrates the "fault" origin that highlights this area of tort law. In Jean’s case, the first argument that needs to be explored is whether Jean’s misfortune was as a case of negligence on the part of East End Four Corners Supermarket.
Jean being a regular shopper, who visited the store at least once a week, knew the general outlay of the store. In tort law, tort is a wrong mostly used in civil law, and negligence ranks among the most popular of this kind. We seek to establish that duty of care existed, there was breach of that duty and damage was inflicted. The salient features that make case for case of duty are Reasonable foresee abilityForesee ability in tort is in its tying human will through selection to the consequences of actions, and then we must ask why tort law views foresee ability in terms of what an actor reasonably should foresee rather than what the person actually does foresee.
One might worry, that is, that holding an actor answerable for a consequence he or she did not foresee, even though a reasonable person would have foreseen it. (Owen, ) this is the practice as everyone prudent being must have reasonable care to their actions and when their overlook this, they must be held accountable. Reliance The grapes were on the aisle, a position that is not for fruits.
A walking shopper who knows the store and, the display counters supporting his notion has no business worrying about mix ups ion merchandise in the store. The supermarket management, in this case the defendant has the responsibility of ensuring the advertised display remains. Grapes on the floor of aisle 3 place the public in danger, and Jean in no exception. She walks gracefully just like all other times of her weekly shopping but this time something is different.
Her reliance on a system supposed to be efficient places her under vulnerability and she gets injured. In this case, the res ipsa loquitur is applicable. Let us look at similar cases. McCabe Vs British American Tobacco Australia Services ltd (Supreme Court of Victoria, 11 April 2002) Rolah McCabe is an illustration where the plaintiff is never expected to trash the defendant’s defense, but that was the case. Rolah became addicted tobacco at the age of 12, back in 1962, way before there were any health warnings on cigarette packs. The first notable warning came way later in 1973, with the slogan, “cigarette smoking is a health hazard”.
After years of smoking, she was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer in 1993, at an advance age of 49. She argues that the defendant had been negligent in its manufacturing and advertising as it knew the nature of its products: they were addictive and dangerous to health. She continued with her argument that the company had targeted children, had taken no reasonable steps to reduce or eradicate the risk of smoking, and had ignored or publicly vilified results that indicated its dangers (John & Benjamin 2001).