Hanzlik v. Interstate Power Co., 8280.

CourtSupreme Court of South Dakota
Writing for the CourtPER CURIAM.
Citation289 N.W. 589,67 S.D. 128
Docket Number8280.
Decision Date16 January 1940

289 N.W. 589

67 S.D. 128


No. 8280.

Supreme Court of South Dakota

January 16, 1940

Appeal from Circuit Court, Minnehaha County; John T. Medin, Judge.

Proceeding for compensation under the Workmen's Compensation Law by William M. Hanzlik, employee, opposed by the Interstate Power Company, employer, and the Zurich Insurance Company of St. Paul, Minn., insurer. From a judgment affirming an award of compensation by the Industrial Commission, the employer and insurer appeal.


L. E. Waggoner, of Sioux Falls, for appellants.

Krause & Van Buren, of Dell Rapids, for respondent.


This is an appeal from a judgment affirming an award of compensation under the South Dakota Workmen's Compensation Law, SDC 64. The essential facts are undisputed and may be epitomized as follows: At the time in question the defendant-employer served some nine communities in the vicinity of, and including, Hartford, South Dakota, with light and power by a connected system of distribution, and employed [289 N.W. 590.] plaintiff as manager of that district. A severe snow and sleet storm did extensive damage to the company's lines and cut off service to much of plaintiff's territory. In attempting to restore that service plaintiff worked ten hours the first day, eighteen hours the second day, seventeen hours the third day, fifteen hours the fourth day, and twenty-four hours the fifth day. During most of these hours he performed exhausting labor while exposed to severe weather and wet snow. He was stricken with illness while returning home on the last day of his labor, and within a few hours thereafter collapsed and was removed to a hospital at Sioux Falls, where his illness was eventually diagnosed as encephalitis. One physician testified that the symptoms indicated the presence of influenza, and that the encephalitis may have followed influenza. The testimony of medical experts warranted the following finding of fact: "That said exposure, exertion, and exhaustion to which said plaintiff then and there was subjected caused him to become weakened physically and thus lowered his physical resistance, making him more susceptible to germ disease; that the encephalitis which he then and there contracted, is a germ disease; that it was stimulated by the favorable condition of his said lowered physical resistance; and that said encephalitis was the result of his said exposure, exertion, and exhaustion."


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