The Schooner Catharine v. Dickinson - 58 U.S. 170 (1854)
U.S. Supreme Court
The Schooner Catharine v. Dickinson, 58 U.S. 17 How. 170 170 (1854)
The Schooner Catharine v. Dickinson
58 U.S. (17 How.) 170
In cases of collision, where the injured vessel has been abandoned, the measure of damages is the difference between her value in her crippled condition and her value before the collision, and this is to be ascertained by the testimony of experts, who can judge of the probable expense of raising and repairing the vessel.
But were the vessel has been actually raised and repaired, the actual cost incurred is the true measure of indemnity.
Where two sailing vessels were approaching each other in opposite directions, one close-hauled to the wind, and the other with the wind free, the weight of evidence is that the vessel which was close-hauled, luffed just previous to the collision. This was wrong; she should have kept her course.
The other vessel had not a sufficient lookout; the excuse given, namely, that all hands bad, just previously, been called to reef the sails, is not sufficient.
Both vessels being thus in fault, the loss must be divided.