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DARRAH v. JONES & LAUGHLIN STEEL CORPORATION (11/09/59)

November 9, 1959

DARRAH
v.
JONES & LAUGHLIN STEEL CORPORATION, APPELLANT.



Appeal, No. 60, March T., 1959, from judgment of Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, April T., 1954, No. 892, in case of Bruce E. Darrah v. Jones & Laughlin Steel Corporation. Judgment affirmed. Trespass for personal injuries. Before ELLENBOGEN, J. Verdict for plaintiff in amount of $19,000; defendant's motions for judgment n.o.v. and new trial overruled and judgment entered on verdict. Defendant appealed.

COUNSEL

Hamilton A. Robinson, with him Clifford J. Koerth, and Dickie, McCamey, Chilcote & Robinson, for appellant.

Dennis C. Harrington, with him McArdle, Harrington & McLaughlin, for appellee.

Before Jones, C.j., Bell, Jones, Cohen, Bok and Mcbride, JJ.

Author: Mcbride

[ 397 Pa. Page 335]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE MCBRIDE

This is an appeal in a personal injury case in which the defendant says it was not negligent and the plaintiff was. Since the plaintiff won the jury verdict we must read the record in the light most favorable to

[ 397 Pa. Page 336]

    him. It would appear that the jury could have found the following facts:

Jones & Laughlin Steel Corporation entered into a contract with United Engineering and Foundry Company for the installation of a new rod mill and a hook conveyor leading to the east bay of the old rod mill. One of the subcontractors to United was Courtney Electric Company for whom the plaintiff, Darrah, was an electrician. Darrah had worked at various jobs at the Jones & Laughlin plant commencing in October, 1952, and the electrical work he was doing there was about completed except for the installation of some conduits, welding of brackets and some painting. Several days prior to November 24, 1952, Darrah and Ecklund, a welder, had been welding and painting brackets for the conduit in the east bay of the old rod mill. While the work was going on, the old rod mill was in full production and the moving machinery created a hazard to Darrah and any others who were engaged in the work being done by United and its subcontractor, Courtney. With knowledge of this fact, Jones & Laughlin had undertaken to provide additional protection for these employees, particularly when they were working around cranes. At least one safety meeting was held prior to November 24, 1952, which meeting was attended by the Courtney employees. At that meeting Samuel McNaugher, referred to frequently throughout the record as "Safety Sam", promised Courtney employees that "Safety men will be supplied by J. & L. when cranes are involved."

On the morning of the accident, at about 8:00 o'clock, Darrah and Ecklund had gone up on a ladder to paint brackets. Thereafter Ecklund left and Darrah was finishing the painting when he decided to come down again. The cab of the crane involved in the accident was located on the west side of the runway and

[ 397 Pa. Page 337]

    was permanently attached. It was energized by electric current on the "hot" rail on the east side of the bay. The crane had not moved between the time Darrah went to ...


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