Reid v. McDevitt, 29940

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
Writing for the CourtEthridge, P. J.
Citation140 So. 722,163 Miss. 226
PartiesREID et al. v. MCDEVITT
Docket Number29940
Decision Date09 May 1932

140 So. 722

163 Miss. 226

REID et al.
v.
MCDEVITT

No. 29940

Supreme Court of Mississippi

May 9, 1932


Division B

(Division B.) Suggestion of Error Overruled,

1. AUTOMOBILES.

Instruction in action for death of pedestrian, struck from rear by defendant's automobile while walking on left side of street, that it was immaterial whether defendant was on such side held erroneous (Code 1930, section 5574).

2. AUTOMOBILES.

One driving automobile on left side of street was under duty to keep strict watch for pedestrians walking on such side with l their backs to him (Code 1930, section 5574).

3. AUTOMOBILES.

It is automobile driver's duty to keep to right side of street, unless it is clear of others equally entitled to its use.

4. AUTOMOBILES.

Instruction that automobile driver was under no duty to sound horn to warn pedestrian, walking along left side of street, if he saw him so close to automobile that he had no time to do so, held erroneous (Code 1930, section 5572).

5. AUTOMOBILES.

It was duty of automobile driver on left side of street to give signals of his approach to pedestrian walking ahead of him on such side (Code 1930, section 5572).

HON. W. J. PACK, Judge.

APPEAL from circuit court of Jones county, HON. W. J. PACK, Judge.

Action by A. J. H. Reid and others against Leo McDevitt. Judgment for defendant, and plaintiffs appeal. Reversed and remanded.

Reversed and remanded.

[163 Miss. 227] J. M. Travis, of Meridian, and Max B. Reid, of Blytheville, Ark., for appellant.

The trial court erred in granting the following instruction for and on behalf of the appellee:

"The court instructs the jury for the defendant that the fact that the defendant may or may not have been on the defendant's left of the center of the road or street is not material and you cannot under your oaths return a verdict for the plaintiffs on this ground alone."

Sec. 5574, Code 1930; Westerfield v. Shell Petroleum Corporation et al., 138 So. 561.

A careful reading of the record in this case shows without any conflict that there was nothing to prevent the said appellee from driving his car on the right hand side of the center of the highway, and in no instance was he compelled in this case to operate his car on the left-hand side of the road for his own safety, and the doctrine of last chance is not involved in this lawsuit.

Flynt v. Fondren, 122 Miss. 248, 84 So. 188; Crystal v. State, 147 Miss. 40, 112 So. 687.

The driver of a motor vehicle not turning to the right is liable for colliding with other vehicles on proper side of highway.

Clark v. Hughes, 134 Miss. 377, 99 So. 6.

This court from the above cases has definitely decided the question of liability where two motor vehicles, or other vehicles, meet on a public highway, that if they are operating said vehicle on the left-hand side of the road, they are liable. It appears to be just as sound a principle of law that if the law fixes the place for a pedestrian to walk, that is on the left hand side of the road, that a pedestrian is entitled to the free use and enjoyment of walking on the left-hand side of the side of the center of the road, and when a motor vehicle undertakes to pass a pedestrian, we contend that he should operate his car on [163 Miss. 228] the right-hand side of the center of the highway in passing the pedestrian walking in the same direction.

The court below erred in giving instruction to the defendant as follows:

"The court instructs the jury that the defendant was under no duty to sound his horn to warn the deceased if defendant saw deceased so close to the automobile that he had no time in which to do so. However, it was the duty of the defendant to use reasonable care to discover persons in the highway in time to warn them of his approach."

Sec. 5572, Code 1930.

The appellee owed to the deceased, Reid, in approaching him, a reasonable warning of his approach.

The record shows without any conflict that no warning, signal or whistle was sounded before the appellee struck the deceased, Reid.

The same general law applicable to the use of all vehicles on public highways applies to automobiles, the substance of which is that a driver must use that degree of care and caution which an ordinarily prudent person would exercise under the same circumstances. But this is not all. Recognizing in the motor vehicle an instrumentality equally as dangerous in many respects as the locomotive and trolley car, the law exacts additional precautions from operators. The failure to see a pedestrian in the street amounts to negligence.

2 R. C. L. 1184; Lauson v. Fon Du Lac, 141 Wis. 57, 123 N.W. 629, 135 Am. St. Rep. 30, 25 L.R.A. (N.S.) 40; 108 Am. St. Rep. 214, note; 4 Ann. Cas. 398, note; 13 Ann. Cas. 464, note; 1. L.R.A. (N.S.) 227, note; State v. Campbell, 82 Conn. 671, 74 A. 927, 135 Am. St. Rep. 293, 18 Ann. Cas. 236; Weil v. Kreutzer, 134 Ky. 563, 121 S.W. 471, 24 L.R.A. (N.S.) 557 and note; Minor v. Mapes, 102 Ark. 351, 144 S.W. 219, 39 L.R.A. (N.S.) 214; Minor v. Stevens, 65 Wash. 423, 118 P. 313, 42 [163 Miss. 229] L.R.A. (N.S.) 1178 and note; Snyder v. Campbell, 110 So. 678.

A pedestrian has a right in the absence of prohibition by statute or ordinance to cross a street at any point, either diagonally or directly, and is not restricted to the regular crossings, hence, the driver of an automobile owes him the duty of reasonable or ordinary care in the circumstances.

14 A.L.R. 1184; Stringer v. Frost, 116 Ind. 477, 2 L.R.A. 614; Wine v. Jones, 183 Iowa 1166, 162 N.W. 196; 168 N.W. 318; Seifert v. Schabile, 81 Kans. 323, 105 P. 529; Bolstad v. Armour & Co., 124 Minn. 155, 144 N.W. 462; Anderson v. Wood, 264 Pa. 98, 107 A. 658; 14 A.L.R. 1183; Simons v. Gaynor, 89 Ind. 165; Craft v. Stone (1919), 124 N.E. 473.

W. S. Welch and Ellis B. Cooper, both of Laurel, for appellee.

Subject to the fundamental rule that he must exercise reasonable care for the safety of others, and in the absence of some express restriction, of...

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6 practice notes
  • Delta Cotton Oil Co. v. Elliott, 32547
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • May 24, 1937
    ...So. 904; Driefus v. Levy, 140 So. 259; Thibodeaux v. Star Checker Cab Co., 143 So. 101; Scaife v. Clifton, 160 So. 142; Reid v. McDevitt, 163 Miss. 226, 140 So. 722. In an instruction the jury was told peremptorily that Trammell was an employee of appellant; that the automobile "was owned a......
  • Keeton v. State, 31931
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • April 6, 1936
    ...154 La. 190, 97 So. 397; People v. Radeloff, 252 N.Y.S. 290, 140 Misc.; State v. Burris, 198 Iowa 1156, 198 S.W. 82; Eaton v. State, 140 So. 722; Bishop v. State, 96 Miss. 846, 52 So. 21; Coon v. State, 12 S. & M. 246; McCann v. State, 13 S. & M. 471; 2 A. L. R. 1017; 26 A. L. R. 541. It wa......
  • Dement v. Summer, 32072
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • February 10, 1936
    ...v. Samuels, 148 Miss. 871, 114 So. 807; Snyder v Campell, 145 Miss 287, 110 So. 678, 49 A. L. R. 1402; Reid v. McDevitt, 163 Miss. 326, 140 So. 722; Standard Coffee Co. v. Carr, 157 So. 686; Gulf Refining Co. v. Miller, 150 Miss. 168, 116 So. 296; Somerville v. Keeler, 145 So. 722; McLean v......
  • Harvey Ragland Co. v. Newton, 6 Div. 211
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Alabama
    • August 28, 1958
    ...Co., 175 Ala. 102, 57 So. 471; Jones and Son v. Lair, 245 Ala. 441(6), 17 So.2d 577.' Appellee cites the case of Reid v. McDevitt, 163 Miss. 226, 140 So. 722. But there the question was concerned with the center of the highway. Had the question [268 Ala. 199] here been limited to the center......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
6 cases
  • Delta Cotton Oil Co. v. Elliott, 32547
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • May 24, 1937
    ...So. 904; Driefus v. Levy, 140 So. 259; Thibodeaux v. Star Checker Cab Co., 143 So. 101; Scaife v. Clifton, 160 So. 142; Reid v. McDevitt, 163 Miss. 226, 140 So. 722. In an instruction the jury was told peremptorily that Trammell was an employee of appellant; that the automobile "was owned a......
  • Keeton v. State, 31931
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • April 6, 1936
    ...154 La. 190, 97 So. 397; People v. Radeloff, 252 N.Y.S. 290, 140 Misc.; State v. Burris, 198 Iowa 1156, 198 S.W. 82; Eaton v. State, 140 So. 722; Bishop v. State, 96 Miss. 846, 52 So. 21; Coon v. State, 12 S. & M. 246; McCann v. State, 13 S. & M. 471; 2 A. L. R. 1017; 26 A. L. R. 541. It wa......
  • Dement v. Summer, 32072
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • February 10, 1936
    ...v. Samuels, 148 Miss. 871, 114 So. 807; Snyder v Campell, 145 Miss 287, 110 So. 678, 49 A. L. R. 1402; Reid v. McDevitt, 163 Miss. 326, 140 So. 722; Standard Coffee Co. v. Carr, 157 So. 686; Gulf Refining Co. v. Miller, 150 Miss. 168, 116 So. 296; Somerville v. Keeler, 145 So. 722; McLean v......
  • Harvey Ragland Co. v. Newton, 6 Div. 211
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Alabama
    • August 28, 1958
    ...Co., 175 Ala. 102, 57 So. 471; Jones and Son v. Lair, 245 Ala. 441(6), 17 So.2d 577.' Appellee cites the case of Reid v. McDevitt, 163 Miss. 226, 140 So. 722. But there the question was concerned with the center of the highway. Had the question [268 Ala. 199] here been limited to the center......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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