U.S. Supreme Court
Northern Pacific R. Co. v. Egeland, 163 U.S. 93 (1896)
Northern Pacific Railroad Company v. Egeland
Argued and submitted April 20, 1896
Decided May 18, 1896
163 U.S. 93
When, in an action by a railroad employee against the company to recover damages for injuries suffered while on duty, the inference to be drawn from the facts is not so plain as to make it a legal conclusion that the plaintiff was guilty of contributory negligence, the question whether he was or was not so guilty must be left to the jury.
The defendant in error, plaintiff below, was a common laborer in the employ of the plaintiff in error. When returning from his work on a train, the conductor ordered him and others to jump off at a station when the train was moving about four miles an hour. The platform was about a foot lower than the car step. His fellow laborers jumped and were landed safely. He jumped and was seriously injured. He sued to recover damages for those injuries. Held that the court below rightly left it to the jury to determine whether he was guilty of contributory negligence.
The case is stated in the opinion.