The opinion of the court was delivered by: LUONGO
1. The Court erred in refusing to submit to the jury impairment of earning capacity as an element of damage.
2. The Court abused its discretion in refusing to postpone the trial.
3. The Court erred in refusing to permit plaintiff to present testimony as to a certain claimed disability resulting from injuries sustained in the accident.
4. The Court erred in refusing to allow the guardian to recover medical and hospital expenses.
5. The verdict was inadequate.
Each of the grounds has been considered carefully and will be discussed briefly. Since all lack merit the motion for new trial will be denied.
1. Impairment of Earning Capacity.
Among the injuries sustained by Miss Pasceri were fractures of several of the pelvic bones. The healing of the fractures resulted in a distortion of the pelvic ring, shifting the right side upward leaving the crest of the right hip approximately one-half inch
higher than the left. The deformity of the hip is permanent and cannot be corrected.
In essence, it is plaintiff's contention that proof of permanent injury, without more, requires submission of impairment of earning power to the jury. The cases he has cited hold only that, even in the absence of actual loss of earnings, the injury and the resultant disabilities may nevertheless establish impairment of earning power for which the injured person is entitled to be compensated.
Thus, in Bochar v. J. B. Martin Motors, Inc., 374 Pa. 240, 97 A.2d 813 (1953), the injured person was a telephone repairman with a permanent 25-30% limitation of motion of the knee. There was evidence that when he returned to his employment he was unable, because of his semi-frozen knee, to perform his duties fully, and that in an important part of his work, tracing "stuck" calls, he was able to do only one-half the amount of work performed by the average man in the industry because of the amount of bending required. There was also evidence of specific loss from inability to do overtime work. On that proof it was held proper to permit the jury to consider whether his economic horizons had been shortened because of the injuries.
To the same effect: Holton v. Gibson, 402 Pa. 37, 166 A.2d 4 (1960) where evidence of permanent skull injury causing severe headaches and memory deficiency; leg injury causing pain upon prolonged standing; inability to perform former duties as a guard; and inability to drive an automobile were held to be sufficient evidence of limitation of economic horizons for submission of impairment of earning power to the jury, notwithstanding higher earnings after the accident; and City of Philadelphia v. Philadelphia Transportation Co., 400 Pa. 315, 162 A.2d 222 (1960), in which permanent injury to a policeman's legs, making it impossible for him to run and interfering with his ability to lift (precluding assignment to duty on an emergency patrol wagon), was held sufficient evidence of inability to perform duties to warrant submission of the issue of impairment of earning power to the jury.