Cases // Transport & Marine
Geoff has handled a wide variety of transport cases.
His record of decided transport cases starts with standard motor vehicle collisions, but spans unusual collisions such as between road trains, between road train and hauled caravan, with ship unloader, and with animals straying on to highways.
The cases have covered seafarer’s compensation, employment discrimination, sinking of vessel in a cyclone, goods lost at sea, what is the 'sea', parasailing, damage to shipped gas turbines, vessel fire, insurance non-disclosure, interference with contractual relations, payment for bunkers, charterparty, conflicts of law, bailment on terms, damaged ship unloader, port authority loss, aviation accidents. He has acted in train derailment cases.
Worker injured hand on fishing vessel. Successfully recovered small amount of damages from skipper and substitute skipper. Claim against owner of vessel failed. Employer’s liability. Occupier’s liability. Statutory liability. Client was successful in that one claim failed and the modest damages awarded in the District Court were well below the limit of the jurisdiction of the Magistrates Court
Liability of owner of warehouse to customer using accessway not occupied by owner. Customer injured by reversing truck combination driven recklessly by unrelated third party. No established category duty of care. Whether duty of care owed by store owner to customer collecting goods. Reasonable foreseeability. Breach of duty. Causation. On appeal client was not successful
At trial client was not successful. Claim for contribution by tortfeasor who reversed truck and trailer combination into customer of warehouse owner. Apportionment of liability. Warehouse owner ordered to pay contribution despite telling customer to go to a warehouse bay
No appeal. At trial client was not successful. Tyre seller client. Road transport. Prime mover and trailers ran off highway and were damaged when steer tyre catastrophically failed after over 170,000 km of use. Seller of tyre held liable for breach of implied contractual terms of fitness for purpose and merchantable quality.
Before High Court client was successful. On appeal client was successful before Court of Appeal. At trial client was successful. Road transport company client. Heavy haulage vehicle insurance. Insurance Contracts Act (Cth) s54. After contract made insured prime movers were driven by drivers who were not ‘PAQS’ tested, contrary to a term of policy. Decision of trial judge and Court of Appeal, requiring insurers to indemnify insured, upheld. Insurers’ appeal to the High Court dismissed
Interlocutory decision, client was successful. Insurers unreasonably failed to accept settlement offer for appeal. Ordered to pay indemnity costs from date when offer ought to have been accepted.
Before High Court client was successful. On appeal client was successful before Court of Appeal. At trial client was successful. Road transport company client. Heavy haulage vehicle insurance. Decision of trial judge, requiring insurers to indemnify insured, upheld. Insurers’ appeal dismissed
At trial client was not successful. Marine insurer client. Marine insurance. Gas turbine transformers damaged during sea voyage. Claim for production of documents in possession of Indian manufacturer relevant to packing. Insured held entitled to indemnity for repair costs
On appeal client was successful. At trial client was not successful. Shipping company client. Claim for delivery up of bunkers. Claim for damages for interference with contract (charterparty). Choice of law. Tort in Singapore. Owner liable for interference with contractual relations
At trial client was successful. Ship building company client. Employer’s liability. Employee working overseas on yacht and injured when travelling on a tender from harbour to the yacht. Whether foreseeable risk of injury. Whether breach of duty. Casual act of negligence. Causation
At trial client was not successful. Marine and civil construction company client. Misleading conduct. Survey of sea fastenings for crane to be towed on ocean going barge. Report that lashings appeared satisfactory, despite factual inadequacy for sea voyage, held not to be misleading
Before High Court client was successful. On appeal client was successful before Court of Appeal. At trial client was successful. Road transport company client. Heavy haulage vehicle insurance. Operation of prime mover and trailer combinations by drivers who were not ‘PAQS’ tested. Section 54 of the Insurance Contracts Act precluded insurer from denying indemnity. By reason of breach of contract of insurance, insurer liable to pay damages for loss of opportunity to earn profits from replacement vehicle