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8epubllc of Lhe hlllpplnes

Ln 8AnC
G.k. No. L-S691 December 27, 1910
S. D. MAk1INL2 and h|s w|fe, CAkMLN CNG DL MAk1INL2, plalnLlffs-appellees,
WILLIAM VAN 8USkIkk, defendanL-appellanL.

1he facLs found by Lhe Lrlal courL are undlspuLed by elLher parLy ln Lhls case. 1hey are -
1haL on Lhe 11Lh day of SepLember, 1908, Lhe plalnLlff, Carmen Cng de MarLlnez, was
rldlng ln a carromaLa on Calle 8eal, dlsLrlcL of LrmlLa, clLy of Manlla, .l., along Lhe lefL-
hand slde of Lhe sLreeL as she was golng, when a dellvery wagon belonglng Lo Lhe
defendanL used for Lhe purpose of LransporLaLlon of fodder by Lhe defendanL, and Lo
whlch was aLLached a palr of horses, came along Lhe sLreeL ln Lhe opposlLe dlrecLlon Lo
LhaL Lhe ln whlch sald plalnLlff was proceedlng, and LhaL Lhereupon Lhe drlver of Lhe sald
plalnLlff's carromaLa, observlng LhaL Lhe dellvery wagon of Lhe defendanL was comlng aL
greaL speed, crowded close Lo Lhe sldewalk on Lhe lefL-hand slde of Lhe sLreeL and
sLopped, ln order Lo glve defendanL's dellvery wagon an opporLunlLy Lo pass by, buL LhaL
lnsLead of passlng by Lhe defendanL's wagon and horses ran lnLo Lhe carromaLa
occupled by sald plalnLlff wlLh her chlld and overLurned lL, severely woundlng sald
plalnLlff by maklng a serlous cuL upon her head, and also ln[urlng Lhe carromaLa lLself
and Lhe harness upon Lhe horse whlch was drawlng lL.

1hese facLs are noL dlspuLe, buL Lhe defendanL presenLed evldence Lo Lhe effecL LhaL Lhe
cochero, who was drlvlng hls dellvery wagon aL Lhe Llme Lhe accldenL occurred, was a
good servanL and was consldered a safe and rellable cochero, LhaL Lhe dellvery wagon
had senL Lo dellver some forage aL aco Llvery SLable on Calle Perran, and LhaL for Lhe
purpose of dellvery Lhereof Lhe cochero drlvlng Lhe Leam as defendanL's employee Lled
Lhe drlvlng llnes of Lhe horses Lo Lhe fronL end of Lhe dellvery wagon and Lhen wenL
back lnslde of Lhe wagon for Lhe purpose of unloadlng Lhe forage Lo be dellvered, LhaL
whlle unloadlng Lhe forage and ln Lhe acL of carrylng some of lL ouL, anoLher vehlcle
drove by, Lhe drlver of whlch cracked a whlp and made some oLher nolses, whlch
frlghLened Lhe horses aLLached Lo Lhe dellvery wagon and Lhey ran away, and Lhe drlver
was Lhrown from Lhe lnslde of Lhe wagon ouL Lhrough Lhe rear upon Lhe ground and was
unable Lo sLop Lhe horses, LhaL Lhe horses Lhen ran up and on whlch sLreeL Lhey came
lnLo colllslon wlLh Lhe carromaLa ln whlch Lhe plalnLlff, Carmen Cng de MarLlnez, was
1he defendanL hlmself was noL wlLh Lhe vehlcle on Lhe day ln quesLlon.
upon Lhese facLs Lhe courL below found Lhe defendanL gullLy of negllgence and gave [udgmenL
agalnsL hlm for 442.30, wlLh lnLeresL Lhereon aL Lhe raLe of 6 per cenL per annum from Lhe
17Lh day of CcLober, 1908, and for Lhe cosLs of Lhe acLlon. 1he case ls before us on an appeal
from LhaL [udgmenL.
1here ls no general law of negllgence ln Lhe hlllpplne lslands excepL LhaL embodled ln Lhe Clvll
Code. 1he provlslons of LhaL code perLlnenL Lo Lhls case are -
ArL. 1902. A person who by an acL or omlsslon causes damage Lo anoLher when Lhere ls
faulL or negllgence shall be obllged Lo repalr Lhe damage so done.
ArL. 1903. 1he obllgaLlon lmposed by precedlng arLlcle ls demandable, noL only for
personal acLs and omlsslons, buL also for Lhose of Lhe persons for whom Lhey should be
1he faLher, and on hls deaLh or lncapaclLy Lhe moLher, ls llable for Lhe damages caused
by Lhe mlnors who llve wlLh Lhem.
Cuardlans are llable for Lhe damages caused by mlnors or lncapaclLaLed persons who
are under Lhelr auLhorlLy and llve wlLh Lhem.
Cwners of dlrecLors of an esLabllshmenL or enLerprlse are equally llable for Lhe damages
caused by Lhe employees ln Lhe servlce of Lhe branches ln whlch Lhe laLLer may be
employed or on accounL of Lhelr duLles.
1he SLaLe ls llable ln Lhls sense when lL acLs Lhrough a speclal agenL, buL noL when Lhe
damages should have been caused by Lhe offlclal Lo whom properly lL perLalned Lo do
Lhe acL performed, ln whlch case Lhe provlslons of Lhe precedlng arLlcle shall be
llnally, masLers or dlrecLors of arLs and Lrades are llable for Lhe damages caused by Lhelr
puplls or apprenLlces whlle Lhey are under Lhelr cusLody.
1he llablllLy referred Lo ln Lhls arLlcle shall cease when Lhe persons menLloned Lhereln
prove LhaL Lhey employed all Lhe dlllgence of a good faLher of a famlly Lo avold Lhe
asslng Lhe quesLlon wheLher or noL an employer who has furnlshed a genLle and LracLable
Leam and a LrusLy and capable drlver ls, under Lhe lasL paragraph of Lhe above provlslons, llable
for Lhe negllgence of such drlver ln handllng Lhe Leam, we are of Lhe oplnlon LhaL Lhe [udgmenL
musL be reversed upon Lhe ground LhaL Lhe evldence does noL dlsclose LhaL Lhe cochero was
Whlle Lhe law relaLlng Lo negllgence ln Lhls [urlsdlcLlon may posslbly be some whaL dlfferenL
from LhaL ln Anglo-Saxon counLrles, a quesLlon we do noL now dlscuss, Lhe rules under whlch
Lhe facL of negllgence ls deLermlned are, neverLheless, generally Lhe same. 1haL ls Lo say, whlle
Lhe law deslgnaLlng Lhe "#$%&' responslble for a negllgenL acL may noL be Lhe same here as ln
many [urlsdlcLlons, Lhe law deLermlnlng whaL (% a '#)*()#'+ acL ls Lhe same here, generally
speaklng, as elsewhere. (Supreme courL of Spaln, 4 uecember, 1903, 16 May, 1893, 27 !une,
1894, 9 Aprll, 1896, 14 March, 1901, 2 March, 1904, 7 lebruary, 1903, 16 !une, 1903, 23 !une,
1903, 13 Aprll, 1903, 7 March, 1902, 12 !une, 1900, 2 March, 1907, 18 March, 1898, 3 !une,
lL appears from Lhe undlspuLed evldence LhaL Lhe horses whlch caused Lhe damage were genLle
and LracLable, LhaL Lhe cochero was experlenced and capable, LhaL he had drlven one of Lhe
horses several years and Lhe oLher flve or slx monLhs, LhaL he had been ln Lhe hablL, durlng all
LhaL Llme, of leavlng Lhem ln Lhe condlLlon ln whlch Lhey were lefL on Lhe day of Lhe accldenL,
LhaL Lhey had never run away up Lo LhaL Llme and Lhere had been, Lherefore, no accldenL due Lo
such pracLlce, LhaL Lo leave Lhe horses and asslsL ln unloadlng Lhe merchandlse ln Lhe manner
descrlbed on Lhe day of Lhe accldenL was Lhe cusLom of all cochero who dellvered merchandlse
of Lhe characLer of LhaL whlch was belng dellvered by Lhe cochero of Lhe defendanL on Lhe day
ln quesLlon, whlch cusLom was sancLloned by Lhelr employers.
ln our [udgmenL, Lhe cochero of Lhe defendanL was noL negllgenL ln leavlng Lhe horses ln Lhe
manner descrlbed by Lhe evldence ln Lhls case, elLher under Spanlsh or Amerlcan [urlsprudence.
(Lynch ,%- nurdln, 1 C. 8., 422, 8umsey ,%- nelson, 38 vL., 390, urake ,%- MounL, 33 n. !. L., 442,
Poboken Land and lmprovemenL Co. ,%- Lally, 48 n. !. L., 604, Wasmer ,%- u. L. & W. 8. 8. Co.,
80 n. ?., 212.) *./"0(1-'#+
ln Lhe case of 2.34.' ,%- PewlLL (eake n. . Cas., pL. 2, p. 170), Lord kenyon sald:
Pe was performlng hls duLy whlle removlng Lhe goods lnLo Lhe house, and, lf every
person who suffered a carL Lo remaln ln Lhe sLreeL whlle he Look goods ouL of lL was
obllged Lo employ anoLher Lo look afLer Lhe horses, lL would be lmposslble for Lhe
buslness of Lhe meLropolls Lo go on.
ln Lhe case of 5$())% ,%- 6*#78#'%+#(' (14 Mlnn., 81), Lhe courL sald:
1he degree of care requlred of Lhe plalnLlff, or Lhose ln charged of hls horse, aL Lhe Llme
of Lhe ln[ury, ls LhaL whlch would be exerclsed by a person of ordlnary care and
prudence under llke clrcumsLances. lL can noL be sald LhaL Lhe facL of leavlng Lhe horse
unhlLched ls ln lLself negllgence. WheLher lL ls negllgence Lo leave a horse unhlLched
musL be depend upon Lhe dlsposlLlon of Lhe horse, wheLher he was under Lhe
observaLlon and conLrol of some person all Lhe Llme, and many oLher clrcumsLances,
and ls a quesLlon Lo be deLermlned by Lhe [ury from Lhe facLs of each case.
ln Lhe case of 9#**#% ,%- :#**'#$ (67 n. !. L., 233), lL was held LhaL lL was error on Lhe parL of Lhe
Lrlal courL Lo refuse Lo charge LhaL "lL ls noL negllgence for Lhe drlver of a qulLe, genLle horse Lo
leave hlm unhlLched and oLherwlse unaLLended on Lhe slde of a publlc hlghways whlle Lhe
drlver ls upon Lhe sldewalk loadlng goods on Lhe wagon." 1he sald courL closed lLs oplnlon wlLh
Lhese words:
1here was evldence whlch could have fully [usLlfled Lhe [ury ln flndlng LhaL Lhe horse was
qulLe and genLle, and LhaL Lhe drlver was upon Lhe sldewalk loadlng goods on Lhe
wagon, aL Llme of Lhe alleged ln[ury, and LhaL Lhe horse had been used for years ln LhaL
way wlLhouL accldenL. 1he refusal of Lhe Lrlal courL Lo charge as requesLed lefL Lhe [ury
free Lo flnd was verdlcL agalnsL Lhe defendanL, alLhough Lhe [ury was convlnced LhaL
Lhese facLs were proven.*./"0(*-'#+
ln Lhe case of ;&<+0/&$+0 ,%- =3- >&- (103 Mass., 342), lL was held:
1haL evldence LhaL a servanL, whom Lraders employed Lo dellver goods, upon sLopplng
wlLh hls horse and wagon Lo dellver a parcel aL a house from flfLy Lo a hundred rods
from a rallroad crosslng, lefL Lhe horse unfasLened for four or flve mlnuLes whlle he was
ln Lhe house, knowlng LhaL lL was noL afrald of cars, and havlng used lL for Lhree or four
monLhs wlLhouL ever hlLchlng lL or knowlng lL Lo sLarL, ls noL concluslve, as a maLLer of
law, of a wanL of due care on hls parL.
1he duLy, a vlolaLlon of whlch ls clalmed Lo be negllgence ln Lhe respecL ln quesLlon, ls Lo
exerclse reasonable care and prudence. Where reasonable care ls employed ln dolng an acL noL
lLself lllegal or lnherenLly llkely Lo produce damage Lo oLhers, Lhere wlll be no llablllLy, alLhough
damage ln facL ensues. (Mllwaukee 8y. Co. ,%- Arms, 91 u. S., 489, arroLL ,%- Wells, 13 Wall.,
324, 8rown ,%- kendall, 6 Cushlng, 292, !ackson ArchlLecLural lron Works ,%-PurlbuL, 138 n. ?.,
34 WesLerfleld ,%- Levls, 43 La. An., 63, nlosl ,%- Lmplre SLeam Laundry, 117 Cal., 237.)
1he acL of defendanL's drlver ln leavlng Lhe horses ln Lhe manner proved was noL unreasonable
or lmprudenL. AcLs Lhe performance of whlch has noL proved desLrucLlve or ln[urlous and whlch
have, Lherefore, been acqulesced ln by socleLy for so long a Llme LhaL Lhey have rlpened lnLo
cusLom, can noL be held Lo be Lhemselves unreasonable or lmprudenL. lndeed Lhe very reason
why Lhey have been permlLLed by socleLy ls LhaL Lhey beneflclal raLher Lhan pre[udlclal.(+7?
.*@ AccldenLs someLlmes happen and ln[urles resulL from Lhe mosL ordlnary acLs of llfe. 8uL such
are noL Lhelr naLural or cusLomary resulLs. 1o hold LhaL, because such an acL once resulLed ln
accldenL or ln[ury, Lhe acLor ls necessarlly negllgenL, ls Lo go far. 1he facL LhaL Lhe docLrlne of $#%
("%. *&A<(+<$ ls someLlmes successfully lnvoked ln such a case, does noL ln any sense mlllLaLe
agalnsL Lhe reasonlng presenLed. 1haL maxlm aL mosL only creaLes a "$(4. @.7(# case, and LhaL
only ln Lhe absence of proof of Lhe clrcumsLances under whlch Lhe acL complalned of was
performed. lL ls someLhlng lnvoked ln favor of Lhe plalnLlff before defendanL's case showlng Lhe
condlLlons and clrcumsLances under whlch Lhe ln[ury occurred, Lhe creaLlve reason for Lhe
docLrlne of $#% ("%. *&A<(+<$ dlsappears. 1hls ls demonsLraLed by Lhe case of B'*.'C .'C
;#.D&.$C >&%+(') >&- ,%- E&*%&' (139 u.S., 331), where Lhe courL sald (p. 334):
. . . 1he whole effecL of Lhe lnsLrucLlon ln quesLlon, as applled Lo Lhe case before Lhe
[ury, was LhaL lf Lhe sLeamboaL, on a calm day and ln smooLh waLer, was Lhrown wlLh
such force agalnsL a wharf properly bullL, as Lo Lear up some of Lhe planks of Lhe
floorlng, Lhls would be "$(4. @.7(# evldence of negllgence on Lhe parL of Lhe defendanL's
agenL ln maklng Lhe landlng, unless upon Lhe whole evldence ln Lhe case Lhls "$(4.
@.7(#evldence was rebuLLed. As such damage Lo a wharf ls noL ordlnarlly done by a
sLeamboaL under conLrol of her offlcers and carefully managed by Lhem, evldence LhaL
such damage was done ln Lhls case was "$(4. @.7(#F and, lf unexplalned, sufflclenL
evldence of negllgence on Lhelr parL, and Lhe [ury mlghL properly be so lnsLrucLed.
1here was presenLed ln Lhls case, and by Lhe plalnLlffs Lhemselves, noL only Lhe facL of Lhe
runway and Lhe accldenL resulLlng Lherefrom, buL also Lhe condlLlons under whlch Lhe runaway
occurred. 1hose condlLlons showlng of Lhemselves LhaL Lhe defendanL's cochero was noL
negllgenL ln Lhe managemenL of Lhe horse, Lhe "$(4. @.7(#case ln plalnLlffs' favor, lf any, was
desLroyed as soon as made.
lL ls a maLLer of common knowledge as well as proof LhaL lL ls Lhe unlversal pracLlce of
merchanLs Lo dellver merchandlse of Lhe klnd of LhaL belng dellvered aL Lhe Llme of Lhe ln[ury,
ln Lhe manner ln whlch LhaL was Lhen belng dellvered, and LhaL lL ls Lhe unlversal pracLlce Lo
leave Lhe horses ln Lhe manner ln whlch Lhey were lefL aL Lhe Llme of Lhe accldenL. 1hls ls Lhe
cusLom ln all clLles. lL has noL been producLlve of accldenLs or ln[urles. 1he publlc, flndlng lLself
unpre[udlced by such pracLlce, has acqulesced for years wlLhouL ob[ecLlon. CughL Lhe publlc
now, Lhrough Lhe courLs, wlLhouL prlor ob[ecLlon or noLlce, Lo be permlLLed Lo reverse Lhe
pracLlce of decades and Lhereby make culpable and gullLy one who had every reason and
assurance Lo belleve LhaL he was acLlng under Lhe sancLlon of Lhe sLrongesL of all clvll forces,
Lhe cusLom of a people? We Lhlnk noL.
1he [udgement |s reversed, w|thout spec|a| f|nd|ng as to costs. So ordered.

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