While it is easier to prove negligence through direct evidence, it is still possible to prove negligence through circumstantial evidence. The latter occurs when, absent direct evidence, there is evidence that can lead to the reasonable conclusion that negligence occurred.
In Michel v Doe and ICBC, the Plaintiff was injured by an object that had come off a logging truck. The identity of the driver of the logging truck was never ascertained. The trial judge dismissed the Plaintiff’s claim, which was upheld by the British Columbia Court of Appeal, who discussed the law of circumstantial evidence as it pertains to injury claims.
 In the case at bar, the real question is whether a breach of that standard of care can be inferred from the evidence. In other words, can the court conclude that a prudent inspection would probably have discovered the rock and infer that such an inspection was not done?
 The defendant argues that the best factual case for the plaintiff is a finding that the rock fell off the load of logs, and then submits that there are too many questions left unanswered by the evidence to allow a finding of negligence. As mentioned above, I think that the alternative possibility of a rock falling from the frame or bunk structure might be a stronger factual case on which to argue that the standard of care was breached. I say that because in my view, applying common sense, a visual check of those parts of the exposed frame and bunk structure that could hold a rock that could be dislodged by the relatively minor forces associated with braking or rounding a curve in the highway is probably a simpler matter than checking the entire load of logs. Of course it is possible that the rock was thrown up onto a part of the truck after the start of its journey, after an initial inspection at the loading site, but that almost certainly would not have happened on the paved highway; in my view, prudence dictates that logging truck drivers should check for such occurrences, just as they should for rocks lodged between their dual tires, when moving from gravelled or dirt secondary roads to major highways.
 In Marchuk v. Swede Creek Contracting Ltd. (1998), 116 B.C.A.C. 318, this Court observed that Fontaine had not modified the underlying principles governing the use of circumstantial evidence with respect to liability in negligence, and emphasized that the burden of proof remained on the plaintiff:
 The Supreme Court of Canada has recently said that the Latin maxim res ipsa loquitur should be abandoned as confusing and unhelpful in cases involving circumstantial evidence of negligence: Fontaine v. Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (1997), 156 D.L.R. (4th) 577. That case was decided after the judgment at trial in the case at bar.
 While the Supreme Court was critical of the Latin maxim, the underlying principles governing the use of circumstantial evidence in determining liability for negligence were not modified. The issue becomes simply whether, after weighing the whole of the direct and circumstantial evidence, the plaintiff has established a prima facie case of negligence against the defendant, and that inference has not been negated by the defendant’s evidence. The legal burden of proof, of course, remains on the plaintiff throughout.
 In this case, the trial judge held that he was unable to infer from the evidence that a breach of the standard of care had occurred. In my view, the appellant’s argument that the standard was breached “because it is obvious that a rock that might foreseeably dislodge and pose a hazard did in fact get dislodged and injured [the appellant]” is a misinterpretation of the trial judge’s formulation of the standard of care. Instead, the judge concluded that the fact that the rock came off the logging truck was not, by itself, sufficient to establish that the standard of care, as he had stated it, was breached.
 The trial judge held that log haulers owed a duty of care to people such as the appellant, the standard of which was “that they must diligently perform a complete inspection of their vehicle and their load to identify and remove debris or any foreign matter that might foreseeably dislodge and pose a hazard to the person or property of any member of the public who might foreseeably be harmed by such debris falling from the vehicle or load.” Having defined the standard of care in terms of a prudent inspection, the trial judge considered the evidence of how the rock had come off the truck to determine whether the rock ought to have been discovered by such an inspection. He concluded that he was unable to determine where the rock had probably been located in the load, and accordingly, was unable to find that it probably would have been discovered by a proper inspection. In other words, the possibilities of non-negligence (a prudent and diligent inspection in which the rock nevertheless eluded detection) and of negligence (no inspection or a negligent one) were equally consistent with the available evidence.
 In the absence of evidence establishing the probable resting place of the rock, I cannot find that it probably would have been discovered by a proper inspection. I must therefore dismiss the plaintiff’s case.
 If I had found a prima facie case of negligence established, I would have granted judgment for the plaintiff, rather than refer the matter to the trial list or order cross-examination of the two motorist witnesses, which were the alternative applications of the defendant. The defendant has had ample opportunity to test the evidence of these independent witnesses. The detail of their evidence is not likely to be determinative of the issue. The only benefit to be obtained by referring the matter to the trial list might be to accommodate the evidence of an accident reconstruction expert of some kind or an exploration of practices in the logging industry by way of expert evidence. The defendant did not advocate the need for any such evidence and either party could have produced it for this summary trial if they had chosen to do so.