Blayney v Knight: 1975

The driver of a car left it momentarily, during which time the defendant went and sat in the driver’s seat. When the driver returned, he attempted to remove the defendant and, in the ensuing struggle, the defendant’s foot accidentally depressed the accelerator causing the car to move off suddenly, the defendant not having intended to drive. Nevertheless, the driver was thrown to the ground and the car ran over his legs.
Held: Widgery LCJ said: ‘I think that this is quite a different case from almost any of the other cases that have come before this court in recent years dealing with driving; they have all been cases where the person was consciously seeking some movement of the car in some way, and was thus driving. Here one has a man sitting in the driving seat, not intending to drive, and as far as I can see not intending to exercise any control over the vehicle, and accidentally his foot touches the accelerator and off goes the car. I content myself by saying I do not think that in any ordinary use of the word ‘driving’ that conduct would be included.’


Widgery LCJ


[1975] RTR 279


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedDirector of Public Prosecutions v Alderton Admn 25-Nov-2003
The defendant had been found sat in his car. He had been spinning its wheels, but not moving. The prosecutor appealed against dismissal of a charge of attempting to drive whilst under the influence of alcohol.
Held: The appeal succeeded. The . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Road Traffic

Updated: 12 May 2022; Ref: scu.189936