Sioux City & Pacific Railroad Co. v. Stout
United States Supreme Court
84 U.S. (17 Wall.) 657 (1873)
The Sioux City & Pacific Railroad (the railroad) (defendant) owned a railroad turntable near a small town inhabited by Henry Stout (plaintiff). Stout, a six-year-old boy, was playing with friends near the turntable. Employees of the railroad were aware that children played on this turntable. In spite of this knowledge, the railroad failed to lock the turntable, erect a fence around it, or in any way prevent a child from playing on it. Furthermore, the turntable was equipped with a latch that secured it in place and would keep the turntable from spinning. However, this particular latch was broken and had not been repaired. Stout, while playing on the turntable, fell from the turntable and his foot was caught between the turntable and the ground, crushing his foot. Stout’s parents sued the railroad on Stout’s behalf. The jury returned a verdict for Stout. The railroad appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Hunt, J.)