Hambrook v Stokes Bros [1925]

Facts

  •  A mother allowed her children to walk by themselves, a little way in front of her
  • The defendant’s employee negligently secured a lorry, therefore it rolled down a hill to the corner where the children were walking
  • She feared that her children may have been injured, and coupled with a bystander telling her a child had been injured, shesuffered mental injury

Issue

  •  Could people outside the zone of immediate physical danger be owed a duty of care?

Decision

  •  Yes, recovery allowed

Reasoning

  •  People outside the zone of danger could recover for mental injury (we’d now call these people secondary victims) for fear for her children’s lives
  • For recovery to succeed, the claimant must have seen the event first hand first hand, not had the event communicated by others in any way

Citation

[1925] 1 KB 141

RELATED CASE  Tuberville v Savage [1669]

Posted in Tort Law Revision Notes.

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