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ANONUEVO VS.

CA

FACTS: Villagracia was traveling along Boni Ave. on his bicycle, while Aonuevo, traversing the opposite
lane was driving a Lancer car owned by Procter and Gamble Inc., the employer of Aonuevos brother.
Aonuevo was in the course of making a left turn towards Libertad Street when the collision occurred.
Villagracia sustained serious injuries and had to undergo four operations. Villagracia instituted an action
for damages against P&G Phils., Inc. and Aonuevo before the RTC. He had also filed a criminal
complaint against Aonuevo before the Metropolitan Trial Court of Mandaluyong, but the latter was
subsequently acquitted of the criminal charge. Aonuevo claims that Villagracia violated traffic
regulations when he failed to register his bicycle or install safety gadgets. He posits that Article 2185 of
the Civil Code applies by analogy. Article 2185. Unless there is proof to the contrary, it is presumed that
a person driving a motor vehicle has been negligent if at the time of the mishap he was violating any
traffic regulation.

ISSUES:

1. Whether or not Art. 2185 of the New Civil Code should apply to non-motorized vehicles, making
Villagracia presumptively negligent.

2. Whether or not Villagracia was negligent for failure to comply with traffic regulations.

3. Whether or not Villagracia is guilty of contributory negligence.


RULING:

1. No. There is pertinent basis for segregating between motorized and non-motorized vehicles. A
motorized vehicle, unimpeded by the limitations in physical exertion. is capable of greater
speeds and acceleration than non-motorized vehicles. At the same time, motorized vehicles are
more capable in inflicting greater injury or damage in the event of an accident or collision. This is
due to a combination of factors peculiar to the motor vehicle, such as the greater speed, its
relative greater bulk of mass, and greater combustibility due to the use of fuel.

2. No. The existence of negligence in a given case is not determined by the personal judgment of
the actor in a given situation, but rather, it is the law which determines what would be reckless
or negligent. Aonuevo asserts that Villagracia was negligent as the latter had transgressed
traffic regulations. However, Aonuevo was speeding as he made the left turn, and such
negligent act was the proximate cause of the accident. Even assuming that Aonuevo had failed
to see Villagracia because the bicycle was not equipped with headlights, such lapse on the
cyclists part would not have acquitted the driver of his duty to slow down as he proceeded to
make the left turn.

3. No. As between Aonuevo and Villagracia, the lower courts adjudged Aonuevo as solely
responsible for the accident. The petition does not demonstrate why this finding should be
reversed. It is hard to imagine that the same result would not have occurred even if Villagracias
bicycle had been equipped with safety equipment. Bianca Danica Santiago Villarama.