Res Ipsa Loquitur
Accessibility Of Evidence
In addition to the three basic requirements, a few states apply res ipsa in negligence cases where the evidence of the facts of the event is more accessible to the defendant than to the plaintiff. In one state, for example, a plaintiff was injured when the bleacher section in which she was sitting collapsed during a basketball game under the management and supervision of the defendant high school athletic association. She sued the association for negligence under the doctrine of res ipsa. The appellate court, reviewing a verdict for the plaintiff, affirmed it because "the underlying reason for the res ipsa rule is that the chief evidence of the true cause of the injury is practically accessible to the defendant but inaccessible to the injured person."