Derek dismissed them. The Court of Appeal the decisions and reasons for the same were upheld. The court did not disturb the findings of fact as the same were admitted. The importance of the decision lies in the court's statement of principle may be stated as the coastguards were under no enforceable private law duty of care to respond to an emergency call and under no duty of care.
Although the issue is expressed in this general way, the specific right in question in these appeals, is whether an action for breach of legal duty to take care while performing duties by coastguard can be brought against the Secretary who is responsible for Coastguard.
law as to what is the duty to take care. Professor Sir Percy Winfield (1933) (1) defined a tort as 'the breach of a duty primarily fixed by the law, where the duty is one towards persons generally and its breach is redressible by an action for damages.' This necessarily implies that to succeed in an action the plaintiff must prove that
In the absence of such legal duty negligence has no legal consequence. In Brett M.R. in Heaven v. Pender (2) it was established that under certain circumstances, one man may owe a duty to another, even though there is no privity of contract between them. Dicta of Brett M.R. in Heaven v. Pender as considered in 1932 by Lord Atkins J. in Donoghue v. Stevenson (3) laid down a very important principle of determining a duty. He held that
"The liability for negligence, whet...
Dicta of Brett M.R. in Heaven v. Pender as considered in 1932 by Lord Atkins J. in Donoghue v. Stevenson (3) laid down a very important principle of determining a duty. He held that
"The liability for negligence, whether you style it such or treat it as in other systems as a species of "culpa," is no doubt based upon a general public sentiment of moral wrongdoing for which the offender must pay. But acts or omissions which any moral code would censure cannot in a practical world be treated so as to give a right to every person injured by them to demand relief. In this way rules of law arise which limit the range of complainants and the extent of their remedy. The rule that you are to love your neighbour becomes in law, you must not injure your neighbour; and the lawyer's question, Who is my neighbour receives a restricted reply. You must take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions which you can reasonably foresee would be likely to injure your neighbour. Who, then, in law is my neighbour The answer seems
1. Winfield on Tort, 8th Ed. (1967)
2. (1883) 11 Q.B.D. 509; see also, Thomas v. Quartermaine, (1887) Q.B.D.685, Le Leiver v. Gould (1893) 1 Q.B. 491; Mogul Steamship Co. v. Mcgregor, Gow and Co.Ltd. (1889) 28 ABD 598; Mcrone v. Riding (1938) 1 E.R. 157; Heley v. London Electricity Board (1965) A.C. 778; Phillips v. William Whitely (1938) 1 A.E.R. 566
3.  A.C. 562
to be - persons who are so closely and directly affected by my act that I ought reasonably to have them in contemplation as being so affected when I am directing my mind to the acts or omissions which are called in question.
This appears to me to be the doctrine of Heaven v. Pender (11