Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 8.01. Civil Remedies and Procedure
Chapter 3. Actions
12/2/2021

Article 6. Injuries to Railroad Employees.

§ 8.01-57. Liability of railroads for injury to certain employees.

Every common carrier by railroad engaged in intrastate commerce shall be liable in damages to any of its employees suffering injury while employed by such carrier or, in the case of the death of any such employee, to his personal representative, for such injury or death, resulting in whole or in part from the wrongful act or neglect of any of its officers, agents, servants, or employees, or by reason of any defect, or insufficiency due to its neglect in its cars, engines, appliances, machinery, track, roadbed, works, boats, wharves or other equipment, except when such employee is injured while engaged in interstate commerce, and except when such employee is injured in the course of his regular employment and such regular employment does not expose such employee to the hazards incident to the maintenance, use and operation of such railroad. If the action be for the death of an employee, §§ 8.01-50 through 8.01-56 shall apply thereto.

Code 1950, § 8-641; 1954, c. 614; 1977, c. 617.

§ 8.01-58. Contributory negligence no bar to recovery; violation of safety appliance acts.

In all actions brought against any such common carrier to recover damages for personal injuries to any employee or when such injuries have resulted in his death, the fact that such employee may have been guilty of contributory negligence shall not bar a recovery, but the damages shall be diminished by the jury in proportion to the amount of negligence attributable to such employee; and no such employee, who may be injured or killed, shall be held to have been guilty of contributory negligence in any case when the violation by such common carrier of any statute enacted for the safety of employees contributed to the injury or death of such employee.

Code 1950, § 8-642; 1954, c. 614; 1977, c. 617.

§ 8.01-59. Assumption of risk; violation of safety appliance acts.

In any action brought against any common carrier, under or by virtue of § 8.01-57, to recover damages for injuries to, or death of, any of its employees, the knowledge of any employee injured or killed of the defective or unsafe character or condition of any machinery, ways, appliances, or structures of such carrier shall not of itself be a bar to recovery for an injury or death caused thereby, nor shall such employee be held to have assumed the risk of his employment in any case in which the violation by such common carrier of any statute enacted for the safety of employees contributed to the injury, or death of such employee.

Code 1950, § 8-643; 1977, c. 617.

§ 8.01-60. Contracts exempting from liability void; set-off of insurance.

Any contract, rule, regulation or device whatsoever the purpose or intent of which shall be to enable any common carrier to exempt itself from any liability created by § 8.01-57, shall to that extent be void; but in any action brought against any such common carrier under or by virtue of such section, such common carrier may set off therein any sum it has contributed or paid to any insurance, relief, benefit or indemnity company that may have been paid to the injured employee or the person entitled thereto on account of the injury or death for which such action was brought.

Code 1950, § 8-644; 1977, c. 617.

§ 8.01-61. Definition of "common carrier" as used in article.

The term "common carrier" as used in §§ 8.01-57 to 8.01-60 shall include the receivers or other persons or corporations charged with the duty of the management or operation of the business of a common carrier by railroad; but shall not include persons, firms or corporations owning or operating railroads when such railroads are primarily and chiefly used as incidental to the operation of coal, gypsum or iron mines or saw mills, nor shall it apply to any railroad owned or operated by any county.

Code 1950, § 8-645; 1954, c. 614; 1977, c. 617.

§ 8.01-62. Action may embrace liability under both State and federal acts.

The motion for judgment or other pleading in any such action may embrace a cause of action growing out of any statute of the United States or this Commonwealth for such injury or death, without being demurrable on this account, and without the plaintiff being required to elect under which statute he claims. Sections 8.01-57 through 8.01-61 shall not apply to electric railways operated wholly within this Commonwealth.

Code 1950, § 8-646; 1954, c. 614; 1977, c. 617.