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MCGINLEY v. UNITED STATES

June 3, 1971

Charles Joseph McGINLEY
v.
UNITED STATES of America. UNITED STATES of America v. NORTHERN METAL CO.


Harold K. Wood, District Judge.


The opinion of the court was delivered by: WOOD

HAROLD K. WOOD, District Judge.

 This is an action brought pursuant to the Suits in Admiralty Act, 46 U.S.C. § 741 et seq. and the Public Vessels Act, 46 U.S.C. § 781 et seq. in which plaintiff, Charles Joseph McGinley is suing the United States of America for injuries which he sustained while working aboard the SS CITADEL VICTORY. Liability having been admitted, the instant action involves solely the issue of damages. Subsequently the United States will try its indemnity action against plaintiff's employer, Northern Metal Company.

 We make the following

 FINDINGS OF FACT

 1. On February 11, 1968, plaintiff, Charles Joseph McGinley, presently 45 years of age, was employed by Northern Metal Company as head stevedore foreman.

 2. On that day, during the course of his employment, he was required to go down into the No. 2 hold of the SS CITADEL VICTORY, then berthed at the Northern Metal Company terminal, in order to make an estimate of the remaining cubic content available for cargo.

 3. As plaintiff descended a vertical steel ladder into the No. 2 hold, he had his feet on one of the rungs of the lower tween deck ladder and held the bottom rung of the upper tween deck ladder with his right hand.

 4. As he exerted a pull on this rung, it came loose in his hand, causing him to fall from the ladder.

 6. Plaintiff rested for several minutes at the lower tween deck level, then ascended the ladder and reported his fall and the condition of the ladder to the chief officer of the vessel. He then continued to work for the remainder of the day.

 7. The next morning the entire left side of plaintiff's body was black and blue and swollen. (N.T. 162)

 8. Plaintiff visited Dr. Micek who was Northern Metal Company's physician. Dr. Micek took X-rays and prescribed medication, and on subsequent visits recommended whirlpool and heat treatments. (N.T. 163)

 9. Plaintiff did not feel that he was benefitting from these treatments and visited Dr. Hoffman, an orthopedist, who took X-rays and prescribed medication. (N.T. 164)

 10. Plaintiff continued to work at Northern Metal Company until April 15, 1968. (N.T. 151)

 11. On April 15, 1968, plaintiff was admitted to Pennsylvania Hospital by Dr. Langfitt who surgically removed a herniated cervical disc.

 12. Dr. Langfitt also treated plaintiff for his low back pains and performed a myelogram on him while he was in the hospital. (N.T. 151)

 13. Plaintiff attempted to return to work on or about July 8, 1968, but was unable to work because of pains in his low back. (N.T. 152)

 14. Plaintiff again returned to work on or about September 3, 1968, but was able to work only until November 6, 1968, at which time he left because of pains in his back. (N.T. 154)

 15. On November 6, 1968, plaintiff was admitted to University of Pennsylvania Hospital for approximately twenty days, during which time a second myelogram was performed and ...


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