O'LEARY V. BROWN-PACIFIC-MAXON, INC., 340 U. S. 504 (1951)

Subscribe to Cases that cite 340 U. S. 504 RSS feed for this section

U.S. Supreme Court

O'Leary v. Brown-Pacific-Maxon, Inc., 340 U.S. 504 (1951)

O'Leary v. Brown-Pacific-Maxon, Inc.

No. 267

Argued December 7, 1950

Decided February 26, 1951

340 U.S. 504


A contractor, engaged in construction work for the Navy on the Island of Guam, maintained for its employees a recreation center adjoining a channel so dangerous that swimming was forbidden, and signs to that effect were erected. After spending the afternoon at the center, an employee was drowned while attempting to swim the channel in order to rescue two men in distress. Under the Longshoremen's and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act, extended to this employee by the Defense Bases Act, the Deputy Commissioner found as a "fact" that the employee's death arose out of and in the course of his employment, and awarded a death benefit to his mother.

Held: the award is sustained. Pp. 340 U. S. 505-509.

1. Such a rescue attempt is not necessarily excluded from the coverage of the Act. Pp. 340 U. S. 506-507.

2. Under the Administrative Procedure Act, the Deputy Commissioner's findings should be accepted unless they are unsupported by substantial evidence on the record considered as a whole. Universal Camera Corp. v. Labor Board, ante p. 340 U. S. 474. Pp. 340 U. S. 507-508.

3. The evidence was sufficient to support the Deputy Commissioner's finding that the employee acted reasonably in attempting the rescue, and that his death may fairly be attributed to the risks of his employment. Pp. 340 U. S. 508-509.

182 F.2d 772 reversed.

The District Court declined to set aside an award under the Longshoremen's and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act of March 4, 1927, 44 Stat. 1424, as amended, 33 U.S.C. §§ 901 et seq. The Court of Appeals reversed. 182 F.2d 772. This Court granted certiorari. 340 U.S. 849. Reversed, p. 340 U. S. 509. chanrobles.com-red

Page 340 U. S. 505