Everett Shull, Sr. (plaintiff), a commercial truck driver, was sent by his employer to a plant owned by B.F. Goodrich Company (Goodrich) (defendant) to pick up a load of tires. While on Goodrich’s dock, Shull was injured when a dock-plate—a mechanical device that forms a bridge between the dock and the truck trailer—malfunctioned and struck Shull. Shull and his wife, Lapaloma, (plaintiff) filed suit against Goodrich for negligence and loss of consortium. At the close of the evidence, the trial court refused the Shull’s request to instruct the jury on the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur, because it concluded that the Shulls failed to present sufficient evidence that: (1) Shull’s injury was proximately caused by the occurrence, (2) the cause of the occurrence was under the exclusive control of Goodrich at the time, and (3) the occurrence was the sort that would not normally occur in the absence of negligence. The jury held for Goodrich. The Shulls appealed.