St. Louis, I.M. & S. Ry. Co. v. McWhirter
229 U.S. 265 (1913)

Annotate this Case

U.S. Supreme Court

St. Louis, I.M. & S. Ry. Co. v. McWhirter, 229 U.S. 265 (1913)

St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern

Railway Company v. McWhirter

No. 541

Argued December 4, 1912

Decided June 10, 1913

229 U.S. 265

Syllabus

Where the case was decided on the federal question, the fact that it might have been decided from a nonfederal point of view does not afford a basis for holding that it was decided on the latter ground and that this Court has no jurisdiction under § 709, Rev.Stat.

While the power of this Court to review the judgment of a state court is controlled by § 709, Rev.Stat., § 237, Judicial Code, yet where, in a controversy of a purely federal character, the claim is made and denied that there was no evidence tending to show liability under the federal statute, such ruling, when duly excepted to, is reviewable, because inherently involving the operation and effect of the federal law.

It was not the intent of Congress, in enacting the Hours of Service Act of 1907, to subject carriers to the extreme liability of insurers of the safety of their employees by rendering them liable for all accidents occurring during the period of overtime, whether attributable to the fact of working overtime or not.

In order to render the carrier liable under the Hours of Service Act, there must be proof tending to show connection between permitting the overtime work and the happening of the accident.

In this case, the evidence does not reasonably tend to connect the working overtime with the accident, which occurred about seven minutes after the expiration of the permitted period.

145 Ky. 427 reversed.

The facts, which involve the construction of the Hours of Service Act of 1907 and the liability of a railroad company thereunder, are stated in the opinion.

Page 229 U. S. 266

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