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Collins v. National Railroad Passenger Corp.

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  • Collins v. National Railroad Passenger Corp.

    Date Decided: Dec 1st, 2010
    Decided By: Maryland Supreme Court (State)
    Court: Maryland Court of Appeals (Highest Court)
    Citation: 417 Md. 217 (Md. 2010)

    In this FELA Case, the plaintiff, a railroad worker, waskilled while working for the defendant. At the time of the accident, Plaintiffwas on assignment to take alignment readings of overhead electrical wires on aspan of railroad track. Plaintiff was electrocuted. During thetrial, the defendant and the decedent's former crew members testified about thedecedent's work experience, safety training, and his decision not to invokeAmtrak's right of first refusal policy. Plaintiff's counsel then offered an instruction on the inapplicabilityof the assumption of risk defense under FELA in order to avoid jury confusion thatmight prejudice the plaintiff's case. The trial judge denied the proposed jury instruction. After a five-day trial, the jurydetermined the plaintiff was solely at fault for the injuries resulting in hisdeath. Plaintiff appealed thetrial court's decision to omit the requested jury instructions.