Appeals, Nos. 54, 55, and 56 April T., 1961, from orders of Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Jan. T., 1958, Nos. 1295 and 1294, in cases of Jenny Pasqualucci v. Donald Kronz et al., and Alfredo Pasqualucci et al. v. Same. Judgments affirmed.
Nick C. King, with him Vincent R. Massock, for appellants.
Kim Darragh, with him Meyer, Darragh, Buckler & Bebenek, for appellees.
Before Ervin, Wright, Woodside, Watkins, and Flood, JJ. (rhodes, P.j., and Montgomery, J., absent).
[ 195 Pa. Super. Page 463]
In the later afternoon of April 17, 1956, Alfredo Pasqualucci was operating a Cadillac two-door sedan in a line of traffic proceeding north on Washington Road, Mt. Lebanon Township, Allegheny County. Seated on the front seat with him were his wife, Columbia, and his sister, Jenny. The first vehicle following the Cadillac was a panel truck. Behind the panel truck was a dump truck owned by Raymond J. Kronz and operated by his son and employe, Donald Kronz. The Pasqualucci car stopped for a red traffic light near the intersection of Crestwood Avenue. The dump truck did not stop in time, collided with the panel truck, and drove it into the rear of the Cadillac.
As a result of this collision, two trespass actions were instituted in the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County at January Term 1958. The defendants admitted liability and the case was contested solely on the issue of the extent of the injuries to the Pasqualuccis and the amount of their damages. After a three-day trial the jury returned a verdict at No. 1294 in favor of Alfredo Pasqualucci in the amount of $56.00, and in favor of Columbia Pasqualucci in the amount of $800.00. At No. 1295 the jury returned a verdict in favor of Jenny Pasqualucci in the amount
[ 195 Pa. Super. Page 464]
of $1,900.00. The court en banc refused plaintiffs' motions for a new trial and directed that judgments be entered on the verdicts. These appeals followed.
At the time of the trial, April, 1960, Alfredo Pasqualucci was fifty-one years of age. His wife, Columbia, was forty-seven, and his sister, Jenny, was forty-two. Immediately after the accident appellants were taken to the St. Clair Memorial Hospital, examined by a doctor, and discharged. On April 20, 1956, appellants consulted Dr. Benjamin Super, their family physician. Dr. Super made a physical examination of each, and suggested to Alfredo and Jenny that they should have x-rays taken. Alfredo's x-rays did not disclose any bone injury, but did reveal some arthritis of the spine. Jenny's x-rays showed no abnormality in the curvature or alignment of the vertebrae, and gave no indication of anything which could be related to recent trauma. Dr. Super saw Alfredo and Columbia at weekly intervals for about a month, but did not render any treatment. He did advise Jenny to wear a Turkish towel collar.
On May 25, 1956, Alfredo consulted Dr. Paul B. Steele, an orthopedic surgeon. Further x-rays were taken. On the basis of his examination, Dr. Steele concluded that there was a marked arthritic condition of the spine which had been aggravated by the accident. He testified that it was normal for the aggravation of such an arthritic condition to wear off after a period of time. Dr. Steele prescribed a brace or corset to support the lumbar region of the back and prevent side movement. On September 12, 1957, seventeen months after the accident, Alfredo complained of discomfort in his neck, and at that time Dr. Steele prescribed a collar for him to wear. In April, 1958, ...