Brady v. Southern Ry. Co.
320 U.S. 476 (1943)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Brady v. Southern Ry. Co., 320 U.S. 476 (1943)

Brady v. Southern Railway Co.

No. 26

Argued October 19, 1943

Decided December 20, 1943

320 U.S. 476


1. Upon review here of a state court decision under the Federal Employers' Liability Act, the question whether the evidence was sufficient to justify submission of the case to the jury is for the determination of this Court. P. 320 U. S. 479.

2. Only by a uniform federal rule as to the sufficiency of the evidence may litigants under the federal Act receive similar treatment in all States. P. 320 U. S. 479.

3. Where, in a suit under the Federal Employers' Liability Act, the evidence is such that a verdict for the defendant is the only reasonable conclusion, the trial court should determine the proceeding by nonsuit, directed verdict, or otherwise in accordance with the applicable practice without submission to the jury, or by judgment non obstante veredicto. P. 320 U. S. 479.

4. The rule as to when a directed verdict is proper is applicable to questions of proximate cause. P. 320 U. S. 483.

5. Evidence in this case under the Federal Employers' Liability Act held insufficient to warrant submission of the case to the jury. P. 320 U. S. 480.

(a) That the derailer was not equipped with a light was not evidence of negligence of the carrier. P. 320 U. S. 480.

(b) Relative to misuse of the derailer, there was no evidence from which the jury could find negligence on the part of employees of the carrier other than the decedent. P. 320 U. S. 481.

(c) The degree of care which it must exercise did not require the carrier to guard against a car striking the derailer from an unexpected direction. P. 320 U. S. 483.

(d) Liability of the carrier cannot be predicated on the existence of the defective rail, since the rail was suitable for ordinary use, was not the proximate cause of the accident, and misuse of the derailer was not a danger reasonably to be anticipated. P. 320 U. S. 482.

222 N.C. 367, 23 S.E.2d 334, affirmed.

CERTIORARI 319 U.S. 777, to review the reversal of a judgment for the plaintiff in an action under the Federal Employers' Liability Act.

Page 320 U. S. 477

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