I delivered this warning during our second or third jury instruction conference. Finally, before empaneling the jury, I convinced the two attorneys that the direction of travel, alleged in the pleadings and assumed throughout the discovery of the case, was wrong. The two attorneys were both from out of town.
To color the lines in a bit, the case involved two cars side-by-side, both in left turn lanes. The driver in the inner lane was an elderly woman who got confused, freely admitted that she went straight instead of turning, and pled guilty to an improper lane usage charge. So liability was pretty clear. The disputed issues were the force of the collision and the resulting damage.
The plaintiff’s version was that when he pulled up and stopped in the outer lane, there was no one in the inner lane. His claim was that the elderly woman tried to “make the light” and she “T-boned” him.