roads, cities, towns, associations, individuals, etc.; twenty applications for change of motive power on street railroads; six applications for increase of capital stock by railroad companies, and one application for reduction of capital stock; four applications under section 59 of the Railroad Law for permission to build steam railroads; two applications for change of corporate name; three applications for approval of leases; two applications for permission to cross the tracks of other railroads at grade; two applications for exemption as to equipment of freight cars with automatic couplers. The determinations in these matters may be found in this volume. The business of the Board has been promptly transacted and matters involving extended investigation and examination have been disposed of with due expedition. There has been no time when arrears of business have been allowed to accumulate, and those appearing before the Board have in the main expressed themselves as satisfied with its decisions.


As was the case in 1893, there have been but few complaints of overcharges regarding carriage of freight. Among these was one from certain fruit merchants in the city of Syracuse, who alleged discrimination in favor of Utica dealers. After several hearings had upon the matter and a full investigation, the Board dismissed the charges, finding that the discrimination complained of had been brought about by temporary depression of rates between Utica and New York due to special competition. This condition was disposed of and the Utica rates were restored to what had been considered a normal point, thus equalizing them with those of Syracuse. A hearing was also given to representatives of the Board of Trade of Buffalo regarding alleged discriminations. The Board, after careful consideration, came to the con

clusion that the question should be laid before the Interstate Commerce Commission rather than before a State board.

Most of the complaints from individuals have been amicably adjusted. There were a few minor complaints, which, upon investigation, the Board found were not sustained.


The Board renews its recommendation of last year, in regard to amending the statute relative to fences along the line of railroads. Many complaints are received from persons residing along the various lines of road in the State, and the railroad companies, upon notification from this Board, have invariably made the necessary repairs.


As stated in the report of last year, the complaints from setting of fires are less numerous than heretofore, there being but one complaint of this sort to this Board during the current year.


The table of accidents for the year ending June 30, 1894, shows a slight decrease in their number as compared with the report for 1893. Seven hundred and twenty-three persons were killed and 1,821 injured, as compared with 742 killed and 2,288 injured in 1893. The following table gives a complete record of all accidents:


TABLE OF ACCIDENTS reported to the Board of Railroad Commissioners, classified as to cause, for the year ending June 30, 1894.

Coupling or uncoupling cars..........
Walking or being on track..
Found dead on track.
Crossing track at highways:

Protected with gates or flagmen....
Not protected with gates or flagmen.
Catching foot in frog or between rails..
Derailment by misplaced switch..
Derailment by broken rail
Derailment by broken frog or switch
Derailment by broken axle...
Derailment by broken wheel..
Derailment by defective track.
Derailment by obstruction on track.
Derailment from unknown causes
Collisions, butting by misplaced switch

Collisions, butting by mistake or neglect of orders or signal.

Collisions, butting with a handcar

Collisions, butting by causes unexplained..

Collisions, rear, by misplaced switch.

Collisions, rear, by mistake or neglect of orders or signal.
Collisions, rear, by parting of trains..

Collisions, rear, from unknown causes
Collisions, at grade crossings of railroads.

Failure of bridge, cattleguard or trestle............

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Locomotive explosions.

Other train accidents
Other causes.....

Casualties not caused by trains, engines or cars

From causes beyond their own control
By their own misconduct or incaution.
Reported or caused by intoxication.
Indeterminable as to want of caution or otherwise.

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558 1,492



742 2,288

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The number of passengers killed from causes own control was twenty-nine, and injured, 142. Many of the injuries to passengers were but slight, such as being cut by glass, bruised, etc. Fourteen passengers were killed and sixtytwo injured by getting on or off of trains in motion. In this volume are included the reports of investigations by the Board of all of these accidents not referred to in the report of 1893.

The number of employes killed in 1894 was 185, and the number injured 1,166, as compared with 306 killed and 1,622 injured for the year ending June 30, 1893. The equipment of freight cars with automatic air-brakes and couplers undoubtedly accounts for some of this decrease, but the primary cause was the decreased number of employes owing to decreased business.

Passengers Carried.

The following shows the total number of passengers carried during the year ending June 30, 1894, as compared with the preceding year:

Steam roads..

Elevated roads.
Street roads.




148,349,330 162,957,535
278,343,341 251,692,610
487,064,531 504,070,025



The accident table shows that the total number of passengers killed during the year ending June 30, 1894, from causes beyond their control was twenty-nine, making the remarkable average of one in each 31,680,000 passengers carried. These totals do not include the 41,221,405 passengers carried on the Brooklyn bridge, where no passengers were killed during the year. With these figures added the average would be one in 33,103,157 passengers carried.

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Grade Crossings.

During the year ninety-five persons were killed and ninetyfive injured at grade crossings.

Reference has already been made to this subject in the earlier paragraphs of this report. In former years the Board has persistently urged legislation. The recommendations heretofore made represent the present views of the Board, with but slight, if any, modification. It is still clear to the Board, as it has been in the past, that in case of new railroad construction no grade crossing should be permitted. The constructing company should in every instance build over or under the highway.

New highways, on the other hand, are and will continue to be often laid out across an existing railroad whose grade is established, and which may have been in operation for a long term of years. In such cases there arises, first, the question whether the company should bear any part of the expense of carrying the highway under or over the steam road. Should the towns, villages or cities in which the street or highway may be laid out bear any part of such expense? These and other questions connected with such new projects present, perhaps, the more vexatious side of the general problem.

In its report of last year the Board expressed itself upon this phase of the subject as follows: "After a careful consideration of the question the Board is of the opinion that the expense should be borne by both interests. The railroads admit that they should bear part of the expense. It remains to determine what proportion. The Board is of the opinion that one-half should be borne by the roads, in view of the franchise rights they enjoy, of the danger to the public incident to the exercise of those rights, of the increased protection to their property which would result from under or over crossings, of the advantages gained by not being compelled to lessen speed, and of the diminution of the

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