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In 2008, Hiroyuki Joho, 18, was hurrying in pouring rain with an umbrella over his head, trying to catch an inbound Metra train due to arrive in about five minutes when he was struck by a southbound Amtrak train traveling more than 70 mph.
Joho's mother, Jeung-Hee Park, who had just dropped him off before the accident, filed her own lawsuit against Metra and the Canadian Pacific Railway. The lawsuit said both entities were negligent because Joho had no warning that what he thought was his Metra train was actually an express Amtrak train. The Metra train was delayed that day, but there was no announcement on the platform's loudspeakers. A Cook County judge found that the railroads had no duty to warn about such an "open and obvious danger" as a moving train, a decision upheld on appeal.
Cause of action: The following is a cause of action for damages as a result of a minor explosion which caused a scale to fall on plaintiff.
Parties: Plaintiff Palsgraf is the woman whom the scale fell on and caused the alleged subsequent damages; defendant railroad company is the party from whom plaintiff seeks damages.
Procedural Facts (what happened in court): Trial court found in favor of plaintiff; defendant appeals.
Substantive Facts (how'd they get to court): Two people were trying to get on a train, which was already on its way out of the station. First person gets on with little trouble. Second person, however, looks as if he was going to fall. Defendant employees of railroad company attempt to help the gentleman get on the train, but in the process a package he was holding escapes his possession. Package is wrapped in newspaper and does not have the look of fireworks, which is what the package turns out to be.
From the impact with the rail lines, the package exploded, and the subsequent shock from the explosion caused several scales on the other end of the platform to fall. Plaintiff struck by one of those scales and causes injury for which she sues.
Issue(s): Was an unforeseen occurrence and subsequent injury the result of defendant's negligent conduct when servant of railroad company attempted to help a patron on the train, and whose package caused the alleged chain of events?
Judge's ruling: Trial court ruling reversed with costs.
Court's Rationale/Reasoning: Defendants never had any idea or reason to know the said package which exploded would contain fireworks. Had there been any reason to know, there would have been a greater duty because the reasonable person under such circumstances would have an understanding of the potential harm. When such a case is not warranted, there is generally no way to link such an innocent action to subsequent events.
If no hazard was apparent to the eye of the ordinary [actor], an act innocent and harmless, at least to outward seeming, with reference to the one harmed by the action, could not be taken to the action of a tort just because something happened to them which was wrong. In addition, "In every instance, before negligence can be predicated of a given act must be sought and found a duty to the individual complaining, the observance of which would have averted or avoided the injury."
Significance: The significance is an unforeseen accident may be held in defendant's charge if the proximate cause or legal cause may be linked to the initial negligent action of defendant. Here, there was no negligence on the part of the defendant, who was trying to help a passenger stay aboard a train (which could have caused arguably a greater problem, should that person had fallen off), and their conduct should not be held to start a negligent-related chain of events.
Originally posted by Vardoger
Spilling coffee on yourself and suing is stupid....
Originally posted by Vardoger
The estate of the 18 year old would be his family. This female dog is going to sue the family of a dead boy...
Spilling coffee on yourself and suing is stupid....this woman is pathetic.
Originally posted by Sherlock Holmes
Is there anything, anything at all, which Americans won't sue someone for ?
Never mind moral values or ethics, litigation must practically be a second income for yanks.