Bowers v. P. Wile's, Inc.Annotate this Case
Plaintiff was injured after slipping and falling on a walkway leading into a garden store owned by Defendant. Plaintiff filed a complaint asserting that she tripped on a stone that had traveled from a gravel area near the concrete walking leading into the store to the walkway. Defendant moved for summary judgment, arguing that Plaintiff could not prevail under the traditional theory of premises liability. Plaintiff, in turn, argued that, although she could not prevail under a traditional theory of premises liability, she could prevail by applying a mode of operation analysis. The superior court granted summary judgment in favor of Defendant, concluding that the mode of operation approach was not applicable in these circumstances. The Supreme Judicial Court vacated the judgment in favor of Defendant, holding that the mode of operation analysis was applicable under the circumstances presented here.