Original jurisdiction in the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania in case of The General State Authority, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Plaintiff v. Coleman Cable & Wire Company, Cokain Electrical Service, Inc., Fidelity and Deposit Co. of Maryland, and McCormick, Taylor & Associates, Inc., Defendants, and Warehouse Electrical Supply, Inc., Additional Defendant.
Jack M. Stover, with him R. J. Woodside, and Shearer, Mette & Woodside, for Cokain Electrical Service, Inc.
John M. Phelan, with him Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, for Fidelity & Deposit Company of Maryland.
C. Grainger Bowman, with him McNees, Wallace & Nurick; Nevin Stetler ; and Stetler & Gribbin, for additional defendants.
Judges Crumlish, Jr., Wilkinson, Jr. and Rogers, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr.
[ 27 Pa. Commw. Page 386]
The instant action in assumpsit was commenced by the General State Authority, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (GSA), against four named defendants: Coleman Cable & Wire Company (Coleman); Cokain Electrical Service, Inc. (Cokain); Fidelity and Deposit Co. of Maryland (Fidelity); and McCormick, Taylor & Associates, Inc. (Taylor), and stems from the installation into Polk State Hospital of allegedly defective cable. The cable had been manufactured by Coleman, wholesaled by Warehouse Electrical Supply,
[ 27 Pa. Commw. Page 387]
Inc. (Warehouse) to Cokain, who installed same in the hospital pursuant to GSA's contract.
After the filing of preliminary objections to the original complaint, GSA filed an amended complaint against the same named defendants. The amended complaint is the document upon which Plaintiff's cause of action is presently based.
Defendants Cokain and Fidelity, its surety, joined Warehouse as an additional defendant by third party complaints.*fn1 Warehouse, in turn, filed preliminary objections in the nature of a demurrer, and in the nature of a motion for a more specific complaint to the third party complaints filed by Cokain and Fidelity, and the disposition of these preliminary objections is currently before this Court.
Plaintiff's amended complaint alleges, inter alia, that certain electrical cable (5 KV cable) used and installed in the electrical distribution system as required by contract specifications, failed because it was defective. Cokain, without acknowledging the truth of the allegations contained in Plaintiff's amended complaint, in turn filed a third party complaint against Warehouse, alleging that if the 5 KV cable was defective, liability rests with the party who furnished the cable to Cokain, i.e., Warehouse. Fidelity, as Cokain's surety, filed a third party complaint against Warehouse making substantially identical allegations.
The third party complaints filed by Cokain and Fidelity, against Warehouse, are substantially identical both in ...