X hits on this document





43 / 60

opinion that his proposal would have been an efficacious “remedy” (Mt. Zion, 169 Ill. 2d

at 117) was “based on mere speculation and conjecture” and did not “create a question of

fact” (Damron, 276 Ill. App. 3d at 909).

Dr. Berg agreed that accidents such as Choate’s “essentially involve[] a young

boy attempting to jump onto a moving freight train” in order to “try[] to show off.” Tr.

1279-80. His proposed engineering improvements (i.e., the construction of channeling

fencing between Ridgeland and Central and the construction of a new pedestrian overpass

at Austin) might at most have reduced the risk that people would seek to cross the tracks

at an unauthorized location between Ridgeland and Central. But they would have done

nothing to abate the condition that injured Choate, which was the ever-present risk that

trespassing children would try to jump onto a moving train wherever they could gain

access to the tracks. There is a world of difference between crossing railroad tracks and

attempting to board a moving train. Tr. 1282-83. As Choate’s own counsel remarked

during trial, merely “crossing over . . . tracks” has “nothing to do with . . . hopping a ride

on the train.” Tr. 1405.

Even assuming that new crossings and channeling fences conceivably could

address an unmet “demand for travel” across defendants’ tracks (Tr. 1239), only a

comprehensive system of barriers, overpasses, and guards along every one of the

countless miles of defendants’ rights-of-way could prevent trespassing children from

trying to jump onto a moving train. Yet Dr. Berg “completely ignored [this] factor[] in

reaching his determination.” Royal Elm Nursing & Convalescent Ctr., Inc. v. N. Ill. Gas

Co., 172 Ill. App. 3d 74, 79 (1st Dist. 1988).

The trial court’s willingness to let the verdict stand notwithstanding Dr. Berg’s

  • -

    34 -

Document info
Document views202
Page views202
Page last viewedTue Jan 17 02:53:54 UTC 2017