Q&As

Can you outline the key case law for road traffic accidents caused by an animal on the highway where the driver has had to swerve to avoid it?

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Published on LexisPSL on 29/04/2016

The following PI & Clinical Negligence Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Can you outline the key case law for road traffic accidents caused by an animal on the highway where the driver has had to swerve to avoid it?

Most cases involving animals straying onto the highway will be decided under the law of negligence. However, some cases have succeeded under The Animals Act 1971 (AA 1971). Where an accident occurs between a vehicle and a farm animal there can often be serious consequences; given the size and unpredictable nature of the animal involved.

The following are examples of cases involving animals straying onto a highway as set out in our Lexis® PSL Personal Injury Practice Note: Road traffic accidents caused by obstacles in the road:

  1. where it was foreseeable that a gate might be left open by walkers and, once open, it was likely that cattle would stray on to the highway, the owners of a dilapidated farm were liable because

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