Appeal from the Order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board in case of Mrs. Ethel Hamilton v. N.V.F. Company, No. A-68656.
Robert A. Rosin, for appellant.
John G. Jenemann, with him Joseph R. Thompson and James N. Diefenderfer, for appellees.
Judges Crumlish, Jr., Wilkinson, Jr., and Rogers, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr.
[ 21 Pa. Commw. Page 426]
This is an appeal by Ethel Hamilton (Claimant) from an opinion and order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board (Board) affirming the referee's denial of workmen's compensation benefits and dismissing her claim petition.
Claimant was employed by the N.V.F. Company (Employer) in April 1969. From December, 1969 until January,
[ 21 Pa. Commw. Page 4271971]
Claimant's duties consisted of operating a plastic molding machine. The work required repeated overhead striking of a wooden mallet against the machine in order to loosen the finished product by knocking side plates from the top of a press. On January 20, 1971, Claimant experienced pain in her elbow. The examination by Claimant's orthopedic physician disclosed a condition known as "epicondylitis" of the right arm. He testified that the condition was work-related and the result of a gradual process caused by the repeated movement of the mallet. He further testified that there were no pre-existing degenerative diseases which caused Claimant's condition.
The referee found as a fact that the Claimant's epicondylitis was a result of the repetitive overhead striking of the mallet in the course of her normal duties. He concluded, however, that the facts did not constitute an "accident" within the meaning of that term in The Pennsylvania Workmen's Compensation Act.*fn1
The Board affirmed the referee's findings of fact and conclusions of law and Claimant filed this appeal. We reverse.
The question presented on appeal is whether the referee erred as a matter of law in his determination that Claimant did not sustain a compensable "accident." For the reasons outlined ...