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    "Jane is an alcoholic. In June 2015, she agreed with the landlords of the three pubs in her village that they would not serve her alcoholic drinks for a period of six months. Unknown to them, on occasions during this time, Jane drank a significant amounts of alcohol at home which she had bought from a local off-license.

    One evening in October 2015, Jane went to the one village pub, the Red Lion. This was her first visit to any pub since June 2015. Mike, the landlord, was not there. Jane was served vodka by the barman, Steve, who was unaware of Jane's arrangement with Mike and the other landlords. Jane, who earlier in the evening had drunk two whiskies at home, drank vodkas at the pub throughout the rest of the night. At 10pm she asked for another drink but Steve refused, saying to Jane that he thought that she 'had probably drunk enough for one night'.

    Jane left the pub immediately to go home. When she got outside in the fresh air she realised she was seriously drunk. Whilst walking home via the canal path, she slipped and fell into the canal, breaking her ankle in the process. Carl, a passer-by some distance away, saw Jane fall and went to her aid. By the time he got there, Jane had pulled herself to safety by the water's edge but Carl slipped on the embankment when rushing to help her. He fell into Jane which resulted in her hitting her head on a rock, causing Jane to suffer a fractured skull. Carl also suffered a compound fracture of his legs in the fall. Jane and Carl were taken to the local NHS hospital.

    Jane was discharged from the hospital the following day. Carl was initially treated by a trainee nurse, Belinda, who failed to hydrate him properly, leaving him weaker than he should have been when, shortly afterwards, an emergency operation has to be performed on Carl's leg. During the operation, which was correctly performed by a surgeon, Carl suffered a stroke which caused long-term facial paralysis. Subsequent medical evidence is unclear as to whether the cause of the stroke was: Carl's weakened state (through lack of hydration) increasing risk of a stroke occurring; the initial leg wound itself; or the natural result of the emergency operation."

    Discuss and apply relevant legal authorities relating to the matters above, to determine the merits of any potential claims under common law negligence.
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Updated: November 13, 2015
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