Bowen v. Cochran

252 Ga. App. 457, 556 S.E.2d 530 (2001)



A plaintiff's contributory negligence bars any recovery whatsoever if his failure to use ordinary care for his own safety is the sole proximate cause of his injuries, even though such negligence concurs with the negligence of the defendant.


The consumer alleged that the trial court erred in denying his motions for directed verdict on the manufacturer's affirmative defenses of assumption of risk and contributory negligence, and erred in charging the jury on these defenses.


Did the court err in denying the consumer’s motions for directed verdict on the manufacturer’s affirmative defenses?




The judgment was affirmed. The evidence showed that the consumer lit the cooker improperly on at least two different occasions and in two different manners. He also left the cooker unattended for 30 minutes with the gas turned on. A jury could conclude that the consumer did in fact assume the risk of a flame bursting from the cooker. The evidence that the consumer could have assumed the risk was also evidence from which a jury could conclude that he failed to use ordinary care in operating the cooker. There was a conflict in the evidence as to a material issue and the evidence did not demand a particular verdict. As there was some evidence to support assumption of the risk and contributory negligence, the trial court did not err in denying the motion for directed verdict. There was no error in instructing the jury on assumption of the risk and contributory negligence.

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