United States v. Chicago Great Western Ry. Co.

CourtUnited States District Courts. 8th Circuit. Northern District of Iowa
Citation162 F. 775
Decision Date06 May 1908
PartiesUNITED STATES v. CHICAGO GREAT WESTERN RY. CO.

162 F. 775

UNITED STATES
v.
CHICAGO GREAT WESTERN RY.
CO.

United States District Court, N.D. Iowa, Eastern Division.

May 6, 1908


[162 F. 776]

Frederick F. Faville, U.S. Atty., James A. Rogers, Asst. U.S. Atty., and Luther M. Walter, Special Asst. U.S. Atty.

Hurd, Lenehan & Kiesel, for defendant.

REED, District Judge (charging jury).

This suit is brought on behalf of the United States by the United States attorney for the Northern district of Iowa, against the Chicago Great Western Railway Company, to recover from that company certain penalties which it is alleged have been incurred by it because of its violation of a law of the United States commonly known as the 'Safety Appliance Law.' The acts of Congress (Act March 2, 1893, c. 196, 27 Stat. 531 (U.S. Comp. St. 1901, p. 3174), as amended by Act March 2, 1903, c. 967, 32 Stat. 943 (U.S. comp. St. Supp. 1907, p. 885)) and the orders of the Interstate Commerce Commission made pursuant thereto and in force at the time of the several acts alleged to have been committed by the defendant provide substantially as follows:

That from and after the 1st day of January, 1898, it shall be unlawful for any common carrier engaged in interstate commerce by railroad to use upon its line of railroad any locomotive engine in moving interstate traffic not equipped with appliances for operating the train-brake system, or to run any train in such traffic that has not 75 per cent. of the cars in such train equipped with power or train brakes that can be operated by the engineer on the locomotive hauling such train, so that he can control its speed without requiring brakeman to use the common hand brake for that purpose. Also, that it shall be unlawful for any such common carrier to haul, or permit to be hauled or used, on its line of railroad, any car used in moving interstate traffic not equipped with couplers coupling automatically by impact, and which can be uncoupled without the necessity of men going between the ends of the cars, and which is not also provided with secure grab irons or hand holds on its ends or sides, for the greater security of the men in coupling and uncoupling cars. The provisions and requirements of this law apply to all trains, locomotives, tenders, cars, and similar vehicles used on any railroad engaged in interstate commerce, and to all other locomotives, tenders, cars, and similar vehicles used in connection therewith; and if any such common carrier shall run any train, or haul or permit to be hauled on its line [162 F. 777] of railroad any car, in violation of any of such provisions, it shall be liable to a penalty of $100 for each and every such violation, to be recovered in a suit or suits to be brought on behalf of the United States by the United States attorney for the proper district, in the District Court of the United States having jurisdiction where such violation shall have been committed; and it is the duty of such United States attorney to bring such suits upon duly verified information being lodged with him of such violation having occurred; and it is also the duty of the Interstate Commerce Commission to lodge with the proper United States attorney information of any such violation as may come to its knowledge.

These provisions, gentlemen, and some others that it is not necessary to now call to your attention, are the laws of Congress, commonly known as the 'Safety Appliance Law,' which it is alleged have been violated by the defendant, and this suit is brought to recover of it the penalty of $100 for each of 10 alleged violations thereof.

The petition is in 14 counts, each of which alleges that the defendant railway company was in March, 1907, a common carrier engaged in interstate commerce by railroad among several of the states of the United States, and particularly between the states of Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, and Minnesota. Counts 11 and 12, however, have been withdrawn, and they are not therefore to be considered by you. The remaining 12 counts charge the 10 violations relied upon by the plaintiffs for recovery, and it is important that you should carefully observe the nature of the several charges made in them. These charges may be classified as follows: First, those which charge the hauling or using of cars by the defendant when not equipped with safety couplers, or grab irons, as required by the law; and, second, those which charge the hauling of a train or trains of cars when 75 per cent. of the cars in such train or trains were not equipped with power or train brakes, as required by the law.

Counts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 13 and 14 are of the first class, and each charges that the defendant, in March, 1907, hauled upon its line of railroad, within the jurisdiction of this court, a certain car, particularly describing it, which car was then being used regularly in the movement of interstate traffic, and that it was hauled by the defendant on its line of railroad when it was not equipped with couplers that would couple automatically by impact and which could be uncoupled without the necessity of a man or men going between the ends of the cars, or with grab irons, as required by this law. Counts 7 and 8 belong to the second class. They both relate to one transaction, and allege that the defendant, in March, 1907, hauled on its line of railroad from Dubuque, in the state of Iowa, with one of its locomotive engines, a certain train, to wit, No. 73, composed of cars consigned from points in Illinois to points in Minnesota and Iowa, when 75 per cent. of the cars in such train were not equipped with power or train brakes that could be operated by the engineer of the locomotive engine drawing said train, and that would enable him to control its speed without requiring brakeman to use the common hand brake for that purpose. Counts 9 and 10 are also of the second class, and both relate to one transaction, and allege that in March, 1907, the defendant [162 F. 778] hauled upon its line of railroad into Dubuque, in the state of Iowa, with its own locomotive, a train, namely, No. 73, composed of cars consigned from a point in Illinois to points in the state of Minnesota, when 75 per cent. of the cars in that train were not...

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9 practice notes
  • Mississippi Cent R. Co. v. Knight, 24615
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • March 30, 1925
    ...A. (N. S.) 582; United States v. Standard Oil Co. of Indiana, 155 F. 305; United States v. Chicago Great Western Ry. Co., [138 Miss. 624] 162 F. 775; United States v. Northern Pac. Terminal B. Co., 144 F. 861; Western Ry. of Alabama v. Mays, 72 So. 641; Devine v. Chicago & C. River R. Co., ......
  • St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railway Company v. York
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Arkansas
    • November 1, 1909
    ...54; 65 Ark. 255. The absolute duty of the defendant to furnish automatic couplers is not satisfied by the use of ordinary care. 163 F. 517; 162 F. 775; 168 F. 175; Id. 236; 169 F. 407 The fact that a car can be repaired more conveniently at another place does not justify its being moved in ......
  • Converse v. Mears, 2.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. Western District of Wisconsin
    • July 16, 1908
    ...But it is not for us to dictate how the domestic policy of Wisconsin shall be framed, or to what extent the Supreme Court of Wisconsin [162 F. 775.] shall yield to the dictates of comity in dealing with cases arising under the statutes of a sister state. We are only concerned with the quest......
  • St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railway Co. v. State
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Arkansas
    • March 31, 1913
    ...541; 72 Miss. 491; 17 So. 168; 157 F. 459; 159 F. 33; 86 C. C. A. 223; 163 F. 642; 165 F. 833; 91 C. C. A. 519; 166 F. 160; 107 F. 870; 162 F. 775; 13 N.Y. 78; 25 Barb. 199; 52 N.Y. 383; 21 A.D. 146; 47 N.Y.S. 349. On the question of construing the statute and what is meant by "each separat......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
9 cases
  • Mississippi Cent R. Co. v. Knight, 24615
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • March 30, 1925
    ...A. (N. S.) 582; United States v. Standard Oil Co. of Indiana, 155 F. 305; United States v. Chicago Great Western Ry. Co., [138 Miss. 624] 162 F. 775; United States v. Northern Pac. Terminal B. Co., 144 F. 861; Western Ry. of Alabama v. Mays, 72 So. 641; Devine v. Chicago & C. River R. Co., ......
  • St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railway Company v. York
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Arkansas
    • November 1, 1909
    ...54; 65 Ark. 255. The absolute duty of the defendant to furnish automatic couplers is not satisfied by the use of ordinary care. 163 F. 517; 162 F. 775; 168 F. 175; Id. 236; 169 F. 407 The fact that a car can be repaired more conveniently at another place does not justify its being moved in ......
  • Converse v. Mears, 2.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. Western District of Wisconsin
    • July 16, 1908
    ...But it is not for us to dictate how the domestic policy of Wisconsin shall be framed, or to what extent the Supreme Court of Wisconsin [162 F. 775.] shall yield to the dictates of comity in dealing with cases arising under the statutes of a sister state. We are only concerned with the quest......
  • St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railway Co. v. State
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Arkansas
    • March 31, 1913
    ...541; 72 Miss. 491; 17 So. 168; 157 F. 459; 159 F. 33; 86 C. C. A. 223; 163 F. 642; 165 F. 833; 91 C. C. A. 519; 166 F. 160; 107 F. 870; 162 F. 775; 13 N.Y. 78; 25 Barb. 199; 52 N.Y. 383; 21 A.D. 146; 47 N.Y.S. 349. On the question of construing the statute and what is meant by "each separat......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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