111 N.Y. 199, Hoag v. New York Cent. & H.R.R. Co.

Citation:111 N.Y. 199
Party Name:ISABELLA C. HOAG, as Administratrix, etc., Appellant, v. THE NEW YORK CENTRAL AND HUDSON RIVER RAILROAD COMPANY, Respondent.
Case Date:November 27, 1888
Court:New York Court of Appeals
 
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Page 199

111 N.Y. 199

ISABELLA C. HOAG, as Administratrix, etc., Appellant,

v.

THE NEW YORK CENTRAL AND HUDSON RIVER RAILROAD COMPANY, Respondent.

New York Court of Appeal

November 27, 1888

Argued October 3, 1888.

Page 200

COUNSEL

G. L. Stedman for appellant. The court erred in nonsuiting plaintiff, whether plaintiff's intestate used the degree of care necessary being a question for the jury. ( Stackus v. N.Y. C. & H. R. R. R. Co., 79 N.Y. 464; 89 id. 308, 311; Massoth v. D. & H. C. Co., 64 id. 529; Hart v. H. R. Bridge Co., 80 id. 622; Kellogg v. N.Y. C. & H. R. R. R. Co., 79 id. 72; Shaw v. Jewett, 86 id. 616.) It is not to be assumed that the deceased did not look or listen. ( Smedis v. Bk'lyn & R. R. R. Co., 88 N.Y. 13; Greany v. L. I. R. R. Co., 101 id. 419.) Although plaintiff's negligence may, in fact, have contributed to the accident if the defendant could, by the exercise of ordinary care and diligence, have avoided the mischief which happened, the plaintiff's negligence will not excuse him. ( Green v. Erie R. Co., 11 Hun, 334; McCall v. N.Y. C. R. R. Co., 54 N.Y. 642; Gorton v. Erie R. Co., 45 id. 660.) The negligence of the husband was not to be imputed to the wife. ( Platz v. City of Cohoes, 26 Hun, 391; 89 N.Y. 219; Robinson v. N.Y. C. R. R. Co., 66 id. 11; Dyer v. Erie R. Co., 71 id. 228.) The omission of the customary signals was an assurance by the company to the plaintiff that no engine was approaching within a quarter of a mile on either side of the crossing; on this he was entitled to reply, and to the defendant he owed no duty of further

Page 201

inquiry. ( Beiseigle v. N.Y. C. R. R. Co., 34 N.Y. 633; Ernst v. H. R. R. R. Co., 39 id. 61; 35 id. 9; Sherry v. N.Y. C. & H. R. R. R. Co., 104 id. 455.)

Hamilton Harris for respondent. There being no evidence whatever that the deceased was not guilty of negligence, and the only inference to be drawn logically from the undisputed facts being that she was guilty, there was no question for the jury. ( Connelly v. N.Y. C. & H. R. R. R. Co., 88 N.Y. 346; Smith v. N.Y. C. & H. R. R. R. Co., 19 W'kly Dig. 230; Becht v. Corbin, 92 N.Y. 658.) A person approaching a railroad track must look and listen, and is excusable for the omission only when the circumstances show that both precautions were impossible or unavailing. ( Woodard v. N.Y. L. E. & W. R. R....

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