Hale (plaintiff) was walking on a sidewalk when she encountered an overgrown bush owned by Ostrow (defendant). The bush grew across the sidewalk and wrapped around a telephone pole, preventing Hale from passage. When Hale noticed the bush, she decided to circumvent the bush by walking into the street. Before Hale left the sidewalk, she checked the street for traffic. While doing so, Hale tripped on a loose piece of concrete and fell, breaking her hip. Hale brought a negligence claim against Ostrow for her injuries. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of Ostrow, stating that the defective sidewalk caused Hale’s injuries. The Tennessee Court of Appeals affirmed, and Hale appealed to the Tennessee Supreme Court.