The ordinary rules of negligence, applied in actions brought by a guest against his host for injuries suffered in an automobile accident, bring about results which are rather generally thought to be unsatisfactory. On the basis either of fairness, that the guest is an ingrate if, willing to accept the accommodation of the ride, he is unwilling to take his chances with his host, or policy, stemming from the more or less collusive nature of many such actions in which the theoretical adversaries cooperate in a friendly fashion to shift the burden to the insurance carrier, there has been a strong trend toward restriction upon recovery in a majority of the states, either by statute or by decision. In Washington the limiting device employed by the court was the requirement that gross negligence be shown for recovery, the rather unhappy history of this method coming to an end when the legislature assumed control over the situation by the enactment of Ch. 18, Laws of 1933.
J. W. Richards & Leon L. Wolfstone,
The Washington Automobile Guest Statute,
12 Wash. L. Rev. & St. B.J.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.law.uw.edu/wlr/vol12/iss2/4