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Leaving Highway 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 Leaving Highway. For more information about traffic collisions see the pages on Wikipedia.

Leaving Highway-Cases

1982 Dutton v. Locker, 224 Va. 535, 297 S.E.2d 814.

Evidence supported verdict of negligence in suddenly applying brakes, losing control of automobile, and crossing center line before striking oncoming vehicle. Testimony indicated that motorcycle in front may have stopped or slowed down suddenly.

1978 Sneed v. Sneed, 219 Va. 15, 244 S.E.2d 754.

Vehicle leaving highway for unknown reason. No prima facie case.

1976 Early Settlers Ins. Co. v. Jordan, 217 Va. 462, 229 S.E.2d 871.

Leaving highway.No contact case. Plaintiff swerved to avoid another vehicle. Struck tree. Accident not covered under policy covering other automobile.

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

Defendant’s vehicle leaving highway killing plaintiff’s decedent. No evidence as to what caused defendant to lose control.

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

In exiting highway on ramp, defendant ran off ramp. Disregard of signs, speed of defendant, and consumption of alcohol sufficient to create jury issue as to negligence.

1973 Moore v. A.P. Woodson Co., 213 Va. 464, 193 S.E.2d 800.

Plaintiff’s decedent died of heart attack 22 months after defendant’s truck crashed into living room where he had been sitting. No proof of causation. Not error to strike plaintiff’s evidence.

1972 Myers v. Sutton, 213 Va. 59, 189 S.E.2d 336.

Defendant drove car into office of service station; station operator injured. Testimony by police officer as to odor of alcohol on breath and partially concealed can of beer relevant to show defendant’s physical condition. Evidence sufficient to warrant finding of negligence.

1972 Brennan v. Kaylor, 213 Va. 33, 189 S.E.2d 371.

Vehicle leaving highway and crashed into field. Plaintiff failed to show how and why accident occurred. Guest case: gross negligence definitely not shown. Plaintiff argued that since defendant claimed no physical injury, vehicle was in good mechanical condition and highway was free from defect, evidence negated all external factors that might have caused accident and eliminated all possibilities other than driver’s error.

1971 McFadden v. Garrett, 211 Va. 680, 179 S.E.2d 482.

Car in which plaintiff was riding, left highway and struck tree for unexplained reason. No evidence of defendant’s driver drinking, excessively speeding or driving recklessly. Not error to strike evidence.

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

Defendant admitted that he had been drinking and that he was not used to it. Defendant’s car left highway for unexplained reason. Plaintiff guest injured. Apparently nothing wrong with car to cause it to go out of control. Verdict for plaintiff.

1970 Harris v. Harris, 211 Va. 459, 177 S.E.2d 534.

Mother injured when car driven by her son left highway and struck bridge abutment. In action against her son, mother testified that proximate cause of accident was negligence of driver of another car, which forced them off road. Her case can be no stronger nor rise any higher than her own positive, clear, and unequivocal testimony permits. Judgment based on jury verdict, reversed in favor of defendant.

1970 Baker v. John Doe, 211 Va. 158, 176 S.E.2d 436.

Auto forced off highway and into brick wall; plaintiff passenger injured. Not clear whether defendant or John Doe operating second vehicle, forced first vehicle off highway. Plaintiff pleaded against both defendants in alternative. Misjoinder not allowed at common law, by statute or by rule of court.

1970 Lumpkin v. John Doe, 210 Va. 571, 172 S.E.2d 790.

Phantom vehicle leaving highway and strikes bicyclist on shoulder of road. Leaving highway is not ipso facto negligence, but in present case, jury issue of negligence raised.

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 and took eyes off road one to two seconds. Vehicle leaving highway and struck tree stump. Defendant tried to regain control after vehicle left roadway. Evidence does not support verdict for plaintiff under gross negligence standard.

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

Plaintiff guest injured when defendant driver burned himself with cigarette ash and took hands off wheel, vehicle left highway and crashed into tree. Rules applicable to momentary inattention and instinctive reactions reasonably performed not applicable. Jury question presented on gross negligence.

1968 Sturman v. Johnson, 209 Va. 227, 163 S.E.2d 770.

Plaintiff guest injured when defendant driver’s vehicle leaving highway. Evidence that defendant was awake, traveling in excess of 90 mph and that plaintiff was about to protest after awakening from nap. Error to strike evidence on either gross or ordinary negligence.

1967 John Doe v. Simmers, 207 Va. 956, 154 S.E.2d 146.

John Doe uninsured motorist action; plaintiff forced off roadway by vehicle unknown to her. Plaintiff not contributorily negligent as matter of law despite testimony that her speed was only 15 mph when she went onto shoulder of road and traveled some 150 feet. Shoulder wet.

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

Momentary inattention caused vehicle to swerve to left, leave highway, and strike telephone pole. Ordinary negligence only, gross negligence not shown.

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 at most.

1966 Meade v. Meade, 206 Va. 823, 147 S.E.2d 171.

Fact that car runs off paved portion of highway onto shoulder at high rate of speed is not sufficient to establish gross negligence.

1966 Grasty v. Tanner, 206 Va. 723, 146 S.E.2d 252.

Evidence failed to show what was cause of vehicle leaving highway. Verdict for defendant.

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

Vehicle allegedly traveling at high speed and left highway. No gross negligence.

1962 Rigney v. Neauman, 203 Va. 822, 127 S.E.2d 403.

Defendant’s vehicle left highway when suddenly confronted by oncoming vehicle at curve. No gross negligence.

1961 Gilmer v. Southern Ry., 202 Va. 826, 120 S.E.2d 294.

Defendant parked truck in lot and left it in gear with parking brake on. Truck rolled backwards and damaged plaintiff’s property. After accident, it was discovered that parking brake was off and vehicle was in gear. Jury question was presented.

1958 Barnes v. Barnes, 199 Va. 903, 103 S.E.2d 199.

Vehicle driven by defendant’s decedent went off roadway. No clear evidence as to cause of accident. Motion to strike properly granted.

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

Plaintiff’s decedent killed when truck driven by defendant suddenly left highway and overturned. Not willful and wanton negligence to look down while changing gears.

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

Car leaving highway as result of driver cutting car slightly. Insufficient to convict of gross negligence.

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

Plaintiff’s decedent guest killed when defendant’s vehicle left highway. Evidence showed vehicle went out of control when front wheel hit chuck hole. Ordinary negligence only.

1950 LeSueur v. Ayres, 191 Va. 119, 60 S.E.2d 26.

Defendant’s truck failed to negotiate curve, left highway and swerved into ditch. Plaintiff’s decedent, passenger in truck, was employee of owner of truck as was driver. Fellow servant rule applied.

1949 Taylor v. Taylor, 189 Va. 753, 53 S.E.2d 820.

Defendant’s vehicle collided with other vehicle and left roadway. Evidence of how car operated after collision not proof of gross negligence.

1948 Schools v. Walker, 187 Va. 619, 47 S.E.2d 418.

Vehicles collided causing damage to plaintiff’s house.

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

No evidence as why vehicle leaving highway in this guest case. Verdict for defendant.

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

Due to driver’s inattention, vehicle leaving roadway. Jury issue presented as to gross negligence.

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Leaving Highway Cases Summarized By Injury Attorney

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