Atlantic Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Florida
Writing for the CourtTAYLOR, J.
Citation44 So. 247,53 Fla. 246
PartiesATLANTIC COAST LINE R. CO. v. MILLER.
Decision Date28 May 1907

44 So. 247

53 Fla. 246

ATLANTIC COAST LINE R. CO.
v.
MILLER.

Florida Supreme Court, Division B.

May 28, 1907


Error to Circuit Court, Putnam County; James T. Wills, Judge.

Action by Annie A. Miller against the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Company. Judgment for plaintiff, and defendant brings error. Reversed.

Syllabus by the Court

SYLLABUS

The engineer in charge of a railroad locomotive has the right to presume that an adult person, whom he sees upon or beside the track ahead of his approaching engine, is in possession of his faculties, and that he will obey the instinctive law of self-preservation by getting off the track if already on it, or that he will not get on it if already off; and in such cases it is not negligence on the engineer's part if he fails to attempt to stop his engine, unless he knows the party, and knows that he labors under some disability that prevents him from being aware of his danger, or that prevents his getting or keeping out of the way, unless he sees evidence of such disability from the party's actions or appearance, or unless he sees that such party cannot or will not get or keep out of the way.

It is the duty of a trial jury to reconcile, if possible, seeming conflicts in the evidence, without convicting either of the conflicting witnesses of intentional and deliberate false swearing.

In a suit brought by the wife for damages against a railroad company for the death of her husband, alleged to have been produced by the negligent operation of the defendant's engine and train, if the uncontradicted evidence affirmatively shows that the defendant was not guilty of any negligence that contributed to the production of the injury, but shows that the deceased brought the accident upon himself solely by his own carelessness in driving with a horse and buggy to and upon the defendant's railway track immediately in front of a rapidly approaching train of cars, of whose presence he must, from the proofs, have known, that was too close upon him when he first drove upon the tracks to have been stopped by any known human agency before coming in collision with him, the plaintiff is not in law entitled to any recovery, and in such a case the trial court should so instruct the jury.

COUNSEL [53 Fla. 247] R. A. Burford and J. N. Blackwell, for plaintiff in error.

Alex. St. Clair-Abrams, for defendant in error.

OPINION

TAYLOR, J.

The defendant in error, as plaintiff below, sued the plaintiff in error, as defendant below, in the circuit court of Putnam county, in an action for damages for the death of her husband, Simon J. Miller, alleged to have been brought about by the negligence and carelessness of the defendant railroad company in the operation of its trains.

The first count of the declaration alleges that on the 17th day of January, 1906, a train of cars of the defendant company was running, towards a public crossing of the defendant's road at a high rate of speed, and without giving any signal or warning of its approach, and while the buggy in which the said Simon J. Miller was sitting was on the crossing the said locomotive and train of cars [53 Fla. 248] negligently ran to and on said crossing, striking the buggy in which the said Simon J. Miller was sitting, and hurling the said buggy and the said Simon J. Miller off of said crossing, and dashing the said Simon J. Miller to the ground, inflicting upon him fatal injuries, from which injuries the said Miller then and there died, and that the defendant, through its employés, carelessly and negligently failed to give any signal, either by sounding the whistle or ringing the bells, so as to advise and warn the said Miller that said locomotive and [44 So. 248] train of cars attached was about to cross the said public highway or crossing, and that by reason of such carelessness of the defendant in failing to give any signal or warning the said locomotive came into collision with the said buggy and caused the death of the said Simon J. Miller.

The second count charges the negligence of the defendant to consist in a failure to keep a lookout ahead of said crossing, and that by reason of such negligence the said defendant failed to stop its said locomotive and train of cars in time to avoid...

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23 practice notes
  • Neil v. Idaho & Washington Northern Railroad
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Idaho
    • June 4, 1912
    ...v. Southern Ry. Co., 57 S.C. 243, 35 S.E. 489; Waldron v. Boston etc. R. Co., 71 N.H. 362, 52 A. 443; A. Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller, 53 Fla. 246, 44 So. 247; Ray's Negligence of Imposed Duties, p. 134; [22 Idaho 78] Elliott, Railroads, sec. 1258; 33 Cyc. 800; Wharton, Negligence, sec. 389a......
  • Elder v. Idaho-Washington Northern Railroad
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Idaho
    • June 24, 1914
    ...v. Southern Ry. Co., 57 S.C. 243, 35 S.E. 489; Waldron v. Boston etc. R. R., 71 N.H. 362, 52 A. 443; Atlantic Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller, 53 Fla. 246, 44 So. 247; Ray on Negligence of Imposed Duties, p. 134; Elliott on Railroads, sec. 1258; 33 Cyc. 800.) WALTERS, District Judge. Ailshie, C......
  • Galicich v. Oregon Short Line R. Co., 2080
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Wyoming
    • February 14, 1939
    ...v. So. Pac. Co. (Ore.) 191 P. 333, 338. Gannett v. B. & M. R. R. (Mass.) 130 N.E. 183, 184. Atlantic Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller (Fla.) 44 So. 247, 249. Cox's Administrator v. Louisville & N. R. R. Co. (Ky. App.) 104 S.W. 282. Beal v. St. L. & S. F. Ry. Co. (Mo.) 256 S.W. 733, 735. 52 C. J.......
  • Powell v. Jackson Grain Co.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • October 24, 1938
    ...v. Gornto, 89 Fla. 97, 103 So. 117; Seaboard Air Line Ry. v. Tomberlin, 70 Fla. 435, 70 So. 437; Atlantic Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller, 53 Fla. 246, 44 So. 247; Covington v. Seaboard Air Line Ry. Co., 99 Fla. 1102, 128 So. 426. See, also, notes in 56 A.L.R. 647. Where, as here, under the sta......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
23 cases
  • Elder v. Idaho-Washington Northern Railroad
    • United States
    • Idaho Supreme Court
    • June 24, 1914
    ...v. Southern Ry. Co., 57 S.C. 243, 35 S.E. 489; Waldron v. Boston etc. R. R., 71 N.H. 362, 52 A. 443; Atlantic Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller, 53 Fla. 246, 44 So. 247; Ray on Negligence of Imposed Duties, p. 134; Elliott on Railroads, sec. 1258; 33 Cyc. 800.) WALTERS, District Judge. Ailshie, C......
  • Galicich v. Oregon Short Line R. Co., 2080
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Wyoming
    • February 14, 1939
    ...v. So. Pac. Co. (Ore.) 191 P. 333, 338. Gannett v. B. & M. R. R. (Mass.) 130 N.E. 183, 184. Atlantic Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller (Fla.) 44 So. 247, 249. Cox's Administrator v. Louisville & N. R. R. Co. (Ky. App.) 104 S.W. 282. Beal v. St. L. & S. F. Ry. Co. (Mo.) 256 S.W. 733, 735. 52 C. J.......
  • Neil v. Idaho & Washington Northern Railroad
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Idaho
    • June 4, 1912
    ...v. Southern Ry. Co., 57 S.C. 243, 35 S.E. 489; Waldron v. Boston etc. R. Co., 71 N.H. 362, 52 A. 443; A. Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller, 53 Fla. 246, 44 So. 247; Ray's Negligence of Imposed Duties, p. 134; [22 Idaho 78] Elliott, Railroads, sec. 1258; 33 Cyc. 800; Wharton, Negligence, sec. 389a......
  • Stevens v. Tampa Electric Co.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • April 12, 1921
    ...57 Fla. 155, 48 So. 750; Louisville & Nashville R. R. Co. v. Harrison, 78 Fla. 381, 83 So. 89; Atlantic Coast Line R. Co. v. Miller, 53 Fla. 246, 44 So. 247; Seaboard Air Line Ry. v. Smith, 53 Fla. 375, 43 So. 235; [81 Fla. 517] Live Oak, P. & G. R. Co. v. Miller, 72 Fla. 8, 72 So. 283; Tam......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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