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Gross Negligence Cases Summarized By Injury Attorney

This page within Virginia Tort Case Law is a compilation of cases reported by the Virginia Supreme Court and summarized by Brien Roche dealing with the topic of Gross Negligence and the related topic of personal injury.  

Brien Roche, Northern Virginia trial attorney has over 35 year of expertise in personal injury litigation. Also see additional info on gross negligence.

2005 City of Lynchburg v. Brown, 270 Va. 166, 613 S.E.2d 407.

Va. Code § 15-2-1809 creates immunity from liability for ordinary negligence when a city is sued for personal injury damages resulting from the maintenance of a park or recreational facility. In this slip and fall case, plaintiff alleged injury on a bleacher at a city maintained athletic park. Although there was evidence of ordinary negligence in that city, employees were at least on constructive notice of the defect, that negligence does not rise to the level of being gross negligence, and therefore, the claim should have been stricken. In this case, there was no evidence of deliberate conduct by city employee and no evidence of total disregard of all precautions by them. If there had been evidence of such, then there may be a jury issue as to gross negligence.

2005 Green v. Ingram, 269 Va. 281, 608 S.E.2d 917.

In this police shooting case, a jury issue was presented as to the gross negligence of the police officer. Gross negligence is that degree of negligence that shows indifference to others as constitutes an utter disregard of prudence amounting to a complete neglect of the safety of another. It must be such a degree of negligence as would shock fair minded people, although something less than willful recklessness. In this case, the police officer fired a shotgun at a door and a jury reasonably could have concluded that he fired it in a fashion contrary to his training and instructions. As a result of that, a woman on the other side of the door was killed.

2003 Koffman v. Garnett, 265 Va. 12, 574 S.E.2d 258.

Thirteen-year-old public school student alleged that his football coach engaged in gross negligence and assault and battery when, while demonstrating proper tackling technique, coach ordered plaintiff to hold a football and stand upright and motionless, and without further warning, coach thrust his arm around plaintiff’s body, lifted him off his feet by two feet or more, and slammed him to the ground. Student weighed 144 pounds while coach weighed 260 pounds. The force of the tackle broke the humerus bone in student’s left arm. In prior practices, no coach had used physical force to instruct players on rules or techniques of playing football. Plaintiff alleged gross negligence. These facts were sufficient to make out a claim for gross negligence and battery. However, assault was not properly alleged since the pleadings do not include an allegation that plaintiff had any apprehension of an immediate battery which is the essence of an assault. Battery on the other hand is an unwanted touching that is neither consented to, excused, nor justified.

2003 Wilby v. Gostel, 265 Va. 437, 578 S.E.2d 796.

There are three levels of negligence. Simple negligence is the failure to use ordinary care. Gross negligence is action which shows indifference to others, disregarding prudence to the level that the safety of others is completely neglected. Willful and wanton negligence is acting consciously in disregard of another person’s rights or acting with reckless indifference to the consequences, with the defendant aware, from his knowledge of existing circumstances and conditions, that his conduct would probably cause injury to another.

2000 Whitley v. Commonwealth, 260 Va. 482, 538 S.E.2d 296.

Administrator of prisoner’s estate asserted claim in federal court under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging deliberate indifference in providing medical care. Federal court concluded that there was insufficient evidence of deliberate indifference to support claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. When action was refiled in state court alleging gross negligence, state court properly concluded that federal court had decided issue. Fact that deliberate indifference is a different cause of action than gross negligence does not preclude the application of collateral estoppel. Factual issues underlying claim of gross negligence were actually litigated in federal action. Claim of gross negligence involves absence of slight diligence. In prior federal action, court determined that defendants had exercised some diligence and as such, gross negligence claim is barred.

1999 Alfonso v. Robinson, 257 Va. 540, 514 S.E.2d 615.

Truck operated by Alfonso stalled. Driver was able to steer truck into right hand lane. Truck thereafter was rear-ended by plaintiff. Issue was whether truck driver was guilty of wanton and willful negligence. Willful and wanton negligence, unlike gross or ordinary negligence, requires actual or constructive consciousness that injury will result from act done or omitted. In this case, Alfonso was a professional driver who had received specialized safety training warning against omissions he made prior to accident. He had been instructed that deployment of safety flares and reflective triangles was first act that should be taken after securing disabled truck. He knew that the purpose of such safety devices was to warn motorists. Despite this training and knowledge, Alfonso consciously chose to leave disabled truck in travel lane, on interstate highway, without placing any warning devices, with knowledge that this would likely cause injury to others. Disabled truck was entirely in traveled portion of highway, at night time, in a very dark area, where speed limit was 55 miles per hour. Jury issue presented as to willful and wanton negligence.

1996 Chapman v. City of Virginia Beach, 252 Va. 186, 475 S.E.2d 798.

Minor child playing on gate to city boardwalk. Gross negligence is utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety of another. It is absence of slight diligence with a want of even scant care. Several acts of negligence alone may not amount to gross negligence but when combined may show a form of reckless or total disregard for another’s safety. In this instance, city had been warned of danger of defective gate; gate was in area maintained by city as recreational facility; gate was in area designed to attract visitors of all ages; under city’s own procedures, gates were to be closed unless employees were performing maintenance. In spite of all this, city took no action and as such jury issue exists as to gross negligence.

1995 Clohessy v. Weiler, 250 Va. 249, 462 S.E.2d 94.

Automobile accident wherein auto struck pedestrian walking on right side of road at night. Motorist had stopped before accident to remove something from antennae and had turned lights off and failed to turn lights back on. Interior window became fogged and as a result defendant did not see plaintiff on side of road. This simply constitutes ordinary negligence and not willful and wanton negligence. Since jury was improperly instructed on this issue, verdict must be reversed. The court was unable to determine on what issue jury returned verdict for plaintiff and since this issue was erroneously submitted to jury, court presumed the jury decided case upon that issue.

1991 Colby v. Boyden, 241 Va. 125, 400 S.E.2d 184.

Police officer entered intersection in pursuit of speeding motorist with his emergency light on and part of the time, his siren on. His speed was no more than five miles over limit, and he swerved and braked in attempt to avoid collision. Trial court did not err in finding that officer exercised some degree of care and as such was not guilty of gross negligence.

1990 Meagher v. Johnson, 239 Va. 380, 389 S.E.2d 310.

Gross negligence is that degree of negligence that shows indifference to others as constitutes utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety of another. It must shock fair-minded people, although it is less than willful recklessness. Police officer in hot pursuit of individual who had breached arrest. He was traveling 36 to 40 miles per hour in 25-mph zone when he struck fugitive with cruiser. As a matter of law, this is not gross negligence.

1987 Frazier v. City of Norfolk, 234 Va. 388, 362 S.E.2d 688.

Suit against city. Plaintiff must prove gross negligence since recreational facility involved. Plaintiff fell from orchestra pit into basement. City retained control of building, was in violation of building code by not putting up barrier, was on notice of danger due to prior accident and knew minors (such as this plaintiff) would be using pit. Gross negligence is complete neglect of safety of others. Plaintiff in this case as matter of law failed to establish gross negligence since condition open and obvious.

1984 Griffin v. Shively, 227 Va. 317, 315 S.E.2d 210.

Law recognizes three degrees of negligence: (1) ordinary or simple, (2) gross, and (3) willful, wanton, and reckless. Simple negligence is failure to use that degree of care that ordinarily prudent person would exercise under same or similar circumstances to avoid injury to another. Gross negligence is that degree of negligence which shows indifference to others as constitutes utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety of another. Willful and wanton negligence is acting consciously in disregard of another person’s rights or acting with reckless indifference to consequences, with defendant aware, from his knowledge of existing circumstances, that his conduct probably would cause injury to another. Conscious discharge of deadly weapon in close proximity to number of people in relatively small room creates jury issue as to willful and wanton negligence.

1983 Morris v. Hamilton, 225 Va. 372, 302 S.E.2d 51.

Gross negligence is that degree of negligence that shows indifference to others as constitutes utter disregard of prudence. It must be such degree of negligence as would shock fair-minded people. In this case inability of defendant to account for presence of watch that had come into her possession, as matter of law, did not constitute gross negligence.

1983 Community Motor Bus Co. v. Windley, 224 Va. 687, 299 S.E.2d 367.

Bus driver who abruptly stopped bus thereby throwing plaintiff passenger to floor after rock had crashed through window was not guilty of gross negligence under former guest statute. Gross negligence is utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety.

1977 Mayo v. Commonwealth, 218 Va. 644, 238 S.E.2d 831.

Defendant’s speeding in residential area and erratic changing of lanes was sufficient to sustain conviction for involuntary manslaughter.

1977 King v. Commonwealth, 217 Va. 601, 231 S.E.2d 312.

Inadvertent failure to turn on headlights, rather than parking lights, is no more than ordinary negligence under circumstances.

1976 Duffer v. Newman, 217 Va. 415, 229 S.E.2d 860.

Mere evidence of excessive speed is not enough to establish gross negligence.

1975 Clark v. Clark, 216 Va. 539, 221 S.E.2d 123.

In addition to excess speed, one of more common indicia of gross negligence is host driver’s deliberate inattention to his duties in the operation of his automobile.

1975 Surface v. Johnson, 215 Va. 777, 214 S.E.2d 152.

Gross negligence rule does not extend to guests who are traveling by aircraft.

1975 Arnold v. Reynolds, 215 Va. 431, 211 S.E.2d 46.

Evidence presented of host driver’s intoxication plus other evidence showing extensive skid marks, both before and after leaving paved portion of highway. Gross negligence is jury issue.

1975 Holloway v. Conner, 215 Va. 422, 211 S.E.2d 39.

Plaintiff guest killed when defendant drove vehicle into bridge. No showing of gross negligence.

1974 Reagan v. Reagan, 215 Va. 222, 207 S.E.2d 888.

Gross negligence is that degree of negligence that shows such indifference to others as constitutes utter disregard of prudence, amounting to complete neglect of safety of guest. It must be such degree of negligence as would shock fairminded men although something less than willful recklessness.

1974 Groome v. Birkhead, 214 Va. 429, 201 S.E.2d 789.

Jury question of gross negligence presented when evidence could be construed to show that: (1) defendant recklessly failed to look before entering intersection where entry was controlled by stop sign, or (2) that she looked but failed to heed danger that was obvious.

1973 Williams v. Vaughan, 214 Va. 307, 199 S.E.2d 515.

Excessive speed coupled with driver’s awareness of particular hazards of road are sufficient to raise jury issue as to gross negligence.

1973 Habers v. Madigan, 213 Va. 485, 193 S.E.2d 653.

Evidence of excessive speed and that dome light inside car was on after impact created jury issue on gross negligence.

1972 Budzinski v. Harris, 213 Va. 107, 189 S.E.2d 372.

Error to grant instruction on simple negligence included in instructions on gross negligence. Gross negligence was necessary for plaintiff to recover; simple negligence instruction merely confused jury.

1972 Brennan v. Kaylor, 213 Va. 33, 189 S.E.2d 11.

Vehicle left highway and crashed into field. Plaintiff failed to show how and why accident occurred. Gross negligence definitely not shown.

1972 Delaney v. Craighill, 212 Va. 774, 188 S.E.2d 78.

Instruction on gross negligence was improper because it set forth duties, violation of which would only constitute ordinary negligence.

1971 Ferguson v. Ferguson, 212 Va. 86, 181 S.E.2d 648.

Failure to exercise ordinary care does not constitute gross negligence. Definition of gross negligence given.

1971 Penington v. Beamon, 211 Va. 493, 178 S.E.2d 511.

Gross negligence is conduct that shows such indifference to safety of others as constitutes utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety of guest. Jury issue presented.

1970 Foster v. Wilhite, 210 Va. 589, 172 S.E.2d 745.

Defendant could offer no explanation why vehicle went out of control, skidded 175 feet, and collided with plaintiff in oncoming lane. Jury issue of whether defendant guilty of gross negligence was presented.

1970 Haymore v. Brizendine, 210 Va. 578, 172 S.E.2d 774.

Within definition of gross negligence may be included statement that it is something less than willful recklessness.

1969 Nichols v. Brizendine, 210 Va. 158, 169 S.E.2d 457.

Defendant accelerated while entering into very dangerous curve with which he was very familiar. Jury question as to gross negligence.

1969 Duncan v. Cox, 209 Va. 649, 166 S.E.2d 107.

Plaintiff guest injured when defendant driver reached over to get candy from passenger, took eyes off road one to two seconds; vehicle left roadway and struck tree stump. Defendant tried to regain control after vehicle left roadway. Evidence does not support gross negligence.

1969 Terry v. Fagan, 209 Va. 642, 166 S.E.2d 254.

Plaintiff guest injured when defendant driver burned himself with cigarette ash, took hands off wheel; vehicle left highway and crashed into tree. Rules applicable to momentary inattention and instinctive reactions reasonably performed, not applicable. Failure to pay full time and attention makes out jury question on gross negligence.

1968 Major v. Hoppe, 209 Va. 193, 163 S.E.2d 164.

Plaintiff guest injured in head-on collision on unmarked undivided two-lane road. Evidence that defendant driver had been drinking. Error to strike plaintiff’s evidence re gross negligence.

1968 National Union Fire Ins. v. Bruce, 208 Va. 595, 159 S.E.2d 815.

Failure to use headlights at night may constitute gross negligence.

1967 Goodwin & Reed v. Gilman, 208 Va. 422, 157 S.E.2d 912.

Driving to left of center was gross negligence.

1967 Virginia Transit v. Hill, 208 Va. 171, 156 S.E.2d 888.

Excessive speed and resultant skidding was found to constitute gross negligence.

1966 Stoner v. Robertson, 207 Va. 633, 151 S.E.2d 363.

Gross negligence admitted by defendant who was driving at excessive speed, on wrong side of a crooked and hilly road and who had been drinking.

1966 Laughorn v. Eanes, 207 Va. 584, 151 S.E.2d 378.

Gross negligence is conduct showing such indifference to others as constitutes utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety.

1966 Guill v. Aaron, 207 Va. 393, 150 S.E.2d 95.

Plaintiff guest injured when defendant sped up, hit icy spot, skidded, left highway, and struck embankment. Simple negligence presented, no gross negligence as matter of law.

1966 Laster v. Tatum, 206 Va. 804, 146 S.E.2d 231.

Gross negligence is less than willful recklessness. Merely speeding is not sufficient to constitute gross negligence.

1966 Smith v. Prater, 206 Va. 693, 146 S.E.2d 179.

Indications of gross negligence are: (1) excessive speed, (2) deliberate inattention to operation of automobile, (3) failure to heed protests of passenger, and (4) deliberate conduct of defendant.

1965 Wallower v. Martin, 206 Va. 493, 144 S.E.2d 289.

Intersection accident. To say that it was incumbent on defendant to exercise slight care to perform certain duties is not proper definition of gross negligence.

1965 Barham v. Bank, 206 Va. 153, 142 S.E.2d 569.

Gross negligence is that negligence that shows utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety of another.

1964 Scott v. Foley, 205 Va. 382, 136 S.E.2d 849.

Gross negligence is that degree of negligence which shows utter disregard of safety of others.

1963 Atwell v. Watson, 204 Va. 624, 133 S.E.2d 552.

Left-turning vehicle turned abruptly in front of defendant. Defendant stopped as soon as possible. No gross negligence.

1962 Fleming v. Bowman, 203 Va. 876, 128 S.E.2d 290.

Defendant passed stop sign. Gross negligence was jury issue.

1961 Lambach v. Bailey, 202 Va. 620, 119 S.E.2d 305.

Jury found gross negligence where defendant was operating car without lights and made sharp left turn in front of fast approaching car.

1960 Gill v. Haislip, 201 Va. 840, 114 S.E.2d 603.

Speed and alleged intoxication of defendant presented jury issue as to gross negligence.

1960 Hailey v. Johnson, 201 Va. 775, 113 S.E.2d 664.

Evidence of defendant going “a little too fast” does not qualify as gross negligence.

1959 Jenkins v. Womack, 201 Va. 68, 109 S.E.2d 97.

Defendant stopped suddenly at intersection, thinking mistakenly that red traffic light was for him. This did not constitute gross negligence.

1959 Ruett v. Nottingham, 200 Va. 722, 107 S.E.2d 402.

Question of gross negligence is not dependent on how many statutory violations or acts of negligence there have been. One act of simple negligence may violate several statutes.

1958 Williams v. Morris, 200 Va. 413, 105 S.E.2d 829.

Intentional “horseplay” in operation of vehicle such as “nudging” was found to be gross negligence.

1957 Thompson v. Letourneau, 199 Va. 560, 101 S.E.2d 1.

Evidence of alcohol consumption and failure to maintain lookout and resulting rear-end collision presented jury issue as to gross negligence.

1957 Barnes v. Moore, 199 Va. 227, 98 S.E.2d 683.

Willful and intentional disregard of consequences will constitute gross negligence.

1957 Smith v. Tatum, 199 Va. 85, 97 S.E.2d 820.

In this automobile accident case even if res ipsa loquitur applied, it would not carry plaintiff’s burden of proving gross negligence. Defendant was student driver who lost control of vehicle.

1957 Smith v. Smith, 199 Va. 55, 97 S.E.2d 907.

Jury issue as to gross negligence. Defendant was on wrong side of road due to inattention. If there are distinct duties that have been violated, then their cumulative effect may constitute gross negligence.

1956 Hill Hardware Corp. v. Hesson, 198 Va. 425, 94 S.E.2d 256.

Complete neglect of safety of others is necessary to justify finding of gross negligence.

1956 Doerr v. Barnes, 198 Va. 306, 94 S.E.2d 271.

Question of whether gross negligence exists does not depend on how many acts of negligence have been proved, but whether such acts constitute such utter disregard of prudence as to establish total indifference of safety.

1956 Ketchmark v. Lindauer, 198 Va. 42, 92 S.E.2d 286.

Gross negligence was found to exist where defendant failed to see several warning signs prior to impact.

1955 Newell v. Riggins, 197 Va. 490, 90 S.E.2d 150.

Fact that defendant fell asleep behind wheel established prima facie case of negligence but did not establish gross negligence as matter of law.

1955 Boward v. Leftwich, 197 Va. 227, 89 S.E.2d 32.

Merely looking down while changing gears and subsequently leaving highway is not, as matter of law, willful and wanton negligence.

1955 Garst v. Obenchain, 196 Va. 664, 85 S.E.2d 207.

Gross negligence was found to exist where defendant drove along winding road and attempted to negotiate 20 degree turn at excessive rate of speed after having been warned to slow down.

1955 Dickerson v. Miller, 196 Va. 659, 85 S.E.2d 275.

Gross negligence is such heedless and reckless disregard of rights of another as to be shocking to reasonable men.

1954 Hershman v. Payne, 196 Va. 241, 83 S.E.2d 418.

Failure to give required signal when turning, cutting corner short of center of intersection, and failing to use reasonable care to see that turn can be made in safety does not constitute gross negligence where he has right to assume that following vehicle will not follow too closely and will not pass in intersection.

1954 Kennedy v. McElroy, 195 Va. 1078, 81 S.E.2d 436.

Gross negligence is that degree of negligence which shows utter disregard of prudence.

1953 Wolfe v. Lockhart, 195 Va. 479, 78 S.E.2d 654.

Defendant driving vehicle while drunk, ran out of gasoline and used starter to back car across highway where it was struck by second defendant who had failed to see it until within 62 feet of collision point. Plaintiff’s decedent, passenger 14 years of age, was killed while riding in first defendant’s vehicle. First defendant guilty of gross negligence.

1953 Alspaugh v. Diggs, 195 Va. 1, 77 S.E.2d 362.

Car left highway and struck electric pole. No evidence sufficient to support jury finding of gross negligence. Several cases cited.

1953 Lloyd v. Green, 194 Va. 948, 76 S.E.2d 190.

Usual indicia of gross negligence are purposeful recklessness, deliberate inattention to known dangers, conscious and intended violation or rash disregard of traffic laws, or like purposeful misconduct.

1953 Crabtree v. Dingus, 194 Va. 615, 74 S.E.2d 54.

Gross negligence is that degree of negligence that shows utter disregard of prudence.

1952 Carr v. Patram, 193 Va. 604, 70 S.E.2d 308.

Mere failure to skillfully operate automobile, to be alert and observant, or to act intelligently may amount to lack of ordinary care but not to wanton or reckless conduct.

1952 Sibley v. Slayton, 193 Va. 470, 69 S.E.2d 466.

Plaintiff guest injured in defendant’s car when it left highway. Gross negligence is utter disregard of prudence.

1952 McDowell v. Dye, 193 Va. 390, 69 S.E.2d 459.

Plaintiff, a guest in defendant’s car, was injured when car left road and struck pole. Defendant driving 35 in 15 mph zone and tried to get cola away from plaintiff in rear seat. Gross negligence properly for jury.

1951 Mitchell v. Wilkerson, 193 Va. 121, 67 S.E.2d 912.

Instruction improper that stated that if defendant “violated two or more of his said duties, you may find him guilty of gross negligence.”

1951 Steele v. Crocker, 191 Va. 873, 62 S.E.2d 850.

Plaintiff was guest in defendant’s vehicle. Defendant attempted to pass three snow plows during snowstorm. Vehicle went into skid, struck oncoming car head-on. Defendant ignored statutory requirements and all ordinary rules of safety. Fair-minded men could not differ as to whether he was guilty of gross negligence.

1949 Butler v. Darden, 189 Va. 459, 53 S.E.2d 146.

Railroad crossing accident. Driver familiar with crossing yet failed to see train. Jury issue as to gross negligence.

1949 Via v. Badanes, 189 Va. 44, 52 S.E.2d 174.

Gross negligence is that degree of negligence that shows utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety of another.

1948 McGhee v. Perkins, 188 Va. 116, 49 S.E.2d 304.

Failure to see stopped vehicle when at least one flare has been placed to rear of stopped vehicle presents jury issue.

1948 Crew v. Nelson, 188 Va. 108, 49 S.E.2d 326.

Rear-end collision with stopped vehicle sufficient to create jury issue as to gross negligence.

1948 Reel v. Spencer, 187 Va. 530, 47 S.E.2d 359.

Defendant made left turn in front of co-defendant. Co-defendant’s failure to see turn signal is not gross negligence.

1948 Millard v. Cohen, 187 Va. 44, 46 S.E.2d 2.

Gross negligence is conduct that shows utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety of another.

1948 Waller v. Waller, 187 Va. 25, 46 S.E.2d 42.

Driving to left of center on approaching hill may be gross negligence.

1947 Hill v. Bradley, 186 Va. 394, 43 S.E.2d 29.

Question of gross negligence is normally for jury.

1947 Austin v. Austin, 186 Va. 382, 43 S.E.2d 31.

Gross negligence is utter disregard of prudence amounting to complete neglect of safety of others.

1947 Masters v. Cardt, 186 Va. 261, 42 S.E.2d 203.

Several acts of negligence of plaintiff, when aggregated, amounted to gross negligence: exceeding speed limit, disregarding warnings of passengers, allowing vehicle to go off hard surface, and driving more than 13 hours in 24-hour period.

1946 Mountjoy v. Burton, 185 Va. 936, 40 S.E.2d 803.

Knowledge on part of defendant that automobile was greatly worn with use, that rear tires were without tread, that road was slippery, that there was defect in car rendering it dangerous to drive fast, and that it was being driven fast at time of accident may constitute gross negligence.

1946 Dinges v. Hannah, 185 Va. 744, 40 S.E.2d 179.

Exceeding speed limit in face of oncoming vehicle that appears to be changing lanes is not gross negligence.

1946 Woodrum v. Holland, 185 Va. 690, 40 S.E.2d 169.

Railroad crossing accident where plaintiff failed to establish accident was due to gross negligence of defendant.

1946 VEPCO v. Holland, 184 Va. 893, 37 S.E.2d 40.

Vehicle proceeding on green light struck by train. Verdict for plaintiff. Gross negligence for defendant to utterly disregard duties.

1945 Big Stone Gap v. Johnson, 184 Va. 375, 35 S.E.2d 71.

Gross negligence is absence of slight diligence or want of even scant care. Existence of gross negligence is normally jury issue.

1945 Keen v. Harman, 183 Va. 670, 33 S.E.2d 197.

For negligence to be gross it should shock fair-minded men.

1944 Chappell v. Mite, 182 Va. 625, 29 S.E.2d 858.

Defendant allegedly bent over to pick up something while driving and car subsequently went out of control. Jury question presented as to gross negligence.

1943 Lipscomb v. O’Brien, 181 Va. 471, 25 S.E.2d 261.

Whether it is gross negligence for defendant to fall asleep while driving, rendering him liable to his guest, is jury question.

1942 Remine v. Mited, 180 Va. 1, 21 S.E.2d 743.

Plaintiff passenger in rear seat saw other vehicle 250 feet from intersection. Vision unobstructed. Driver guilty of gross negligence.