Bailey v Rolls-Royce (1971) Limited: CA 1984

The court considered the meaning of the word likely in the section: ‘A person shall not be employed to lift, carry or move any load so heavy as to be likely to cause injury to him.’
Held: ‘likely’ in that context meant ‘more probable than not’. May LJ: ‘there was clearly a risk that injury might occur, but I do not think that I can say that it was ‘likely’, or ‘probable’, or ‘more probable than not”. Slade LJ: ‘this construction of the phrase is, I think, one which not only accords with the natural meaning of the words according to ordinary English usage, but also with what may be presumed to have been the intention of Parliament’. Stephenson LJ: The words refer to ‘injury which is ‘probable’, and ‘probable’ can be expanded, or extended, and possibly clarified, to mean ‘more probable than not’.’


May LJ, Stephenson LJ, Slade LJ


[1984] ICR 688


Factories Act 1961 72(1)


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedCream Holdings Limited and others v Banerjee and The Liverpool Daily Post and Echo Limited CA 13-Feb-2003
The defendants considered publication of alleged financial irregularities by the claimant, who sought to restrain publication. The defendants argued that under the Act, prior restraint should not be used unless a later court would be likely to . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Health and Safety

Updated: 23 March 2022; Ref: scu.182931