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UNION PACIFIC R. CO. V. HADLEY, 246 U. S. 330 (1918)

U.S. Supreme Court

Union Pacific R. Co. v. Hadley, 246 U.S. 330 (1918)

Union Pacific R. Co. v. Hadley

No. 174

Argued March 7, 1918

Decided March 18, 1918

246 U.S. 330


If the defendant's conduct, viewed as a whole, warrants a finding of negligence, the trial court may properly refuse to charge concerning each constituent item mentioned by the declaration, and leave the general question to the jury.

Page 246 U. S. 331

The fact that a brakeman who was killed by a rear-end collision while in the caboose of a standing train would have escaped if he had been at his post to give warning, as his duty required, does not make his neglect the only proximate cause of his death if the collision was due also to negligent operation of the train coming from behind. The case is within the terms of Employers' Liability Act, § 1.

In an action under the Employers' Liability Act, where the evidence is such as to justify the jury in treating the employee's contributory negligence as slight or inconsequential in its effects, the jury may properly find that nothing substantial should be deducted on account of it from the damages, and the fact that the verdict is excessive will not warrant an assumption that, in making such finding, the jury disobeyed the court's instructions on apportionment.

Where the state trial and supreme courts cut down an excessive verdict upon the assumption that the excess was due to the jury's failure to follow instructions on diminution of damages for contributory negligence, held, the assumption not being justified by the record, that their action did not invade the province of the jury under the Federal Employers' Liability Act, but was merely in exercise of their power to require a remittitur.

99 Neb. 49 affirmed.

The case is stated in the opinion.

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