165 F.2d 920 (3rd Cir. 1948), 9522-9525, Stafford v. Roadway Transit Co.

Docket Nº:9522-9525.
Citation:165 F.2d 920
Party Name:STAFFORD et ux v. ROADWAY TRANSIT CO. (BARRINGER, Third-Party Defendant). BARRINGER v. ROADWAY TRANSIT CO.
Case Date:January 29, 1948
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
 
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Page 920

165 F.2d 920 (3rd Cir. 1948)

STAFFORD et ux

v.

ROADWAY TRANSIT CO. (BARRINGER, Third-Party Defendant).

BARRINGER

v.

ROADWAY TRANSIT CO.

Nos. 9522-9525.

United States Court of Appeals, Third Circuit.

January 29, 1948

Argued Jan. 6, 1948.

Rehearing Denied Feb. 24, 1948.

Page 921

Frank B. Quinn, of Erie, Pa. (English, Quinn, Leemhuis & Plate, of Erie, on the brief), for appellant.

Maurice J. Coughlin, of Erie, Pa. (Thomas B. O'Connor, of Erie, Pa., on the brief), for appellee.

Before MARIS, McLAUGHLIN, and KALODNER, Circuit Judges.

MARIS, Circuit Judge.

These four appeals, which were argued together, were taken by the defendant from judgments entered against it in two actions for damages for personal injuries and death resulting from a collision which took place on June 21, 1942 at about 4:15 A.M., in Erie County, Pennsylvania, between an automobile in which the plaintiffs, citizens of Pennsylvania, were riding and a truck of the defendant, a Michigan corporation. The facts are fully set forth in the exhaustive opinion filed by the trial judge, 70 F.Supp. 555, and need not be detailed here. It is sufficient at this point to say that of the four occupants of the automobile William Charles Barringer, who was driving it, was injured, his wife, Mary Anne Barringer, who was seated beside him, was instantly killed, and the owner of the car, Barthol Stafford, and his wife, Margaret Stafford, both of whom were in the back seat, were injured.

As we have said, two actions were brought in the district court against Roadway Transit Company, the owner of the truck involved in the accident. One was brought by Stafford and Mrs. Stafford, and the other by Barringer, both in his own right and as trustee ad litem for the heirs of Mrs. Barringer. The trial judge, sitting without a jury, after making findings of fact and conclusions of law, decided that Stafford was entitled to recover.$1, 269 for his personal injuries and the expenses sustained by him with respect thereto and $1, 691 for the damages incurred by him as a result of Mrs. Stafford's injuries, that Mrs. Stafford was entitled to recover $4, 031, and that Barringer by reason of his contributory negligence was not entitled to recover anything either in his own right or under the Pennsylvania Wrongful Death Act as trustee ad litem for the heirs of Mrs. Barringer. He also held that the statute of limitations barred the latter claim. Motions for a new trial and for judgment notwithstanding the verdict were made by the defendant and were refused by the district court, 73 F.Supp. 458, and judgment was entered accordingly.

The defendant, Roadway Transit Company, appealed from the judgments in favor of Stafford (our nos. 9522 and 9523) and Mrs. Stafford (our no. 9524). On these appeals the defendant urges that the competent evidence did not establish that

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it was guilty of negligence, that in any event Barringer's negligence was so gross, extraordinary and unusual as to constitute a superseding cause of harm so that the accident would have happened even though the defendant had not been guilty of negligence, and (in nos. 9522 and 9523) that Barringer's negligence was imputable to Stafford as owner of the automobile and an occupant of it at the time of the accident. We deem it sufficient with respect to the first two of these...

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