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CARPINELLI v. PENN STEEL CASTINGS CO. ET AL. (03/23/67)

decided: March 23, 1967.

CARPINELLI
v.
PENN STEEL CASTINGS CO. ET AL., APPELLANTS



Appeals from judgment of Court of Common Pleas No. 3 of Philadelphia County, June T., 1965, No. 6304, in case of Henry J. Carpinelli v. Penn Steel Castings Co. et al.

COUNSEL

Earl Thomas Britt, with him Paul H. Ferguson and Frederick W. Anton, III, for appellants.

Joseph A. Purul, Jr., with him Thomas E. Roberts, Counsel, State Workmen's Insurance Fund, Raymond Kleiman, Deputy Attorney General, and Walter E. Alessandroni, Attorney General, for Commonwealth, appellant.

Charles F. Quinn, with him Sheer & Mazzocone, for appellee.

Ervin, P. J., Wright, Watkins, Montgomery, Jacobs, Hoffman, and Spaulding, JJ. Opinion by Spaulding, J.

Author: Spaulding

[ 209 Pa. Super. Page 392]

In an accident many years prior to this claim, claimant lost his right leg approximately six inches above the ankle. On August 27, 1957 in the course of employment with defendant Penn Steel Castings Company, claimant injured his right arm which resulted in its amputation and his total disablement.

Two questions are presented on appeal. The first, never previously before this Court, is whether claimant is entitled to total disability payments under § 306.1 of the Act of 1915, June 2, P. L. 736, as amended, 77 P.S. § 516, which provides in pertinent part: "If an employe, who has incurred (through accident or otherwise) permanent partial disability, through the loss, or loss of use of, one hand, one arm, one foot, one leg or one eye, incurs total disability through a subsequent injury, causing loss, or loss of use of, another hand, arm, foot, leg or eye, he shall be entitled to additional compensation as follows: After the cessation of payments by the employer for the period of weeks prescribed . . . for the subsequent injury, additional compensation shall be paid during the continuance of total disability, at the weekly compensation rate applicable for total disability, for the remainder of the five hundred week period . . . . This additional compensation

[ 209 Pa. Super. Page 393]

    shall be paid by the Commonwealth only upon an award by a compensation referee or the board." (Emphasis added.)

The Board found claimant was totally disabled because of the previous loss of his leg. It awarded total disability compensation to be paid by the Commonwealth out of the Second Injury Reserve Fund, after the cessation of payments by the employer for loss of the arm.

The Commonwealth contends that "another hand, arm, foot, leg or eye" in § 306.1 means total disability resulting from a corresponding member and does not include the loss of a noncorresponding member. The court below ruled against this contention.

Under the Statutory Construction Act, 1937, May 28, P. L. 1019, § 51, 46 P.S. § 551, where legislative language is "clear and free from all ambiguity", it is to be given literal effect.*fn1 In the context of § 306.1, the meaning of "another" is not clear. This section was enacted in 1945 when an influx of handicapped war veterans was anticipated. The 1945 Legislative Journal indicates that the underlying purpose was to liberalize the compensation law "to give ...


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