Subsequently, the case of enlarged the scope of the duty owed to a trespasser by including the duty of common humanity. In this case a six – year old child intruded on railway premises by going through a hole in the fence from an adjacent children’s play ground. The child went to an electrified railway line and was electrocuted there. Several incidents of the fence having been broken at several places had been taking place. It was well established that the railway authorities had knowledge of the same and that they were well aware of the fact that children often intruded through the holes from the nearby playground. In spite of this, they had not taken any measures to prevent trespass by children. The Court held that the railway authorities were responsible for the electrocution of the child as they owed a common duty of humanity. The court further held that occupiers of property were expected to act in a humane manner with regard to trespassers, on the basis of their own knowledge, ability and resources2.The Occupier’s Liability Act 1957 had not accorded sufficient importance to the duty of humanity. The duty of humanity requires the occupier to initiate appropriate measures in order to prevent intruders from known dangers and to avert personal injuries. The occupant was not required to inspect the premises for possible dangers. In Pannett v McGuinness, the defendants were demolition contractors and were burning rubbish on the site. The defendants engaged three workmen to supervise the fire and prevent children from entering these premises. While the workmen were away from the site, Pannet, a child aged five years, entered the premises and fell into the fire. It was a fact that the child was a trespasser and the evidence revealed that on several occasions, children had intruded upon the premises and had been chased away. The court held that the defendants were culpable because they had failed to take appropriate steps to prevent children from entering their premises, despite knowing that children were about to enter their premises3.Issues hindering the exercise of public rights or public health, safety and convenience comprise misuse or interference. In order to seek a redressal action in tort, claimants have to establish that they suffered damage over and above what had been suffered by the public at large.In Attorney General v. PYA Quarries, the
1. Attorney General v PYA Quarries (1957) 2 QB 169.
2. Attorney General v Tod-Heatley (1897) 1 Ch 560.
3. British Railways Board v Herrington (1972) AC 877.
4. HARRIS v BIRKENHEAD CORPORATION (1976) 1 WLR 279 (CA).
5. Pannett v. McGuinness & Co. Ltd.  3 All E.R. 137
6. Rose v Miles  4 M&S 101
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