California Civil Jury Instructions (CACI)

2921. Causation Under FSAA or BIA

If you decide that [name of defendant] [describe violation of the Federal Safety Appliance Act/Boiler Inspection Act], then this is a cause of harm if it played any part, no matter how small, in bringing about the [harm/death], even if other factors also contributed to the [harm/death].

Sources and Authority

"Actions alleging a violation of the BIA are brought under the FELA. The standard of causation required in a BIA case is the same as the standard of causation required in a FELA negligence case." (Summers v. Missouri Pacific Railroad System (10th Cir. 1997) 132 F.3d 599, 606, internal citations omitted.)

"Proximate cause, as traditionally understood, is not required to establish causation under either the FELA or the BIA. 'Under the FELA [but not the BIA], an employee is entitled to recover damages if the employer's negligence played any part in producing the injury, no matter how slight.' " (Fontaine v. National Railroad Passenger Corp. (1997) 54 Cal.App.4th 1519, 1525 [63 Cal.Rptr.2d 644], internal citations omitted.)

Liability under the BIA is established if defendant's violation of the BIA "played any part, no matter how small, in bringing about or actually causing, the injury" to the plaintiff . . . "without any requirement of a showing of negligence on the part of the defendant." (Oglesby v. Southern Pacific Transportation Co. (9th Cir. 1993) 6 F.3d 603, 606-609.)

(New September 2003)