No. 935 April Term 1976, Appeal from the Judgments of the Court of Common Pleas, Civil Division for the County of Mercer at No. 1061 DSB 1976 and No. 1062 DSB 1976.
Cyril T. Garvey, Sharon, for appellants.
Bernard Goldstone, Sharon, for appellees.
Watkins, President Judge, and Jacobs, Hoffman, Cercone, Price, Van der Voort and Spaeth, JJ. Watkins, former President Judge, and Van der Voort, J., did not participate in the consideration or decision of this case.
[ 255 Pa. Super. Page 239]
This is an appeal from an order denying a motion for judgment n. o. v. or new trial in a negligence case.
Appellants, Buddy and Margaret Beckstine, own a dairy farm and some 110 Jersey milk cows. Appellee, Alton Jewell, on the date relevant to this case, was also a dairy
[ 255 Pa. Super. Page 240]
farmer, and in addition worked as a milk hauler; as a hauler, on every other day, as part of a route, he drove his tank truck to the Beckstines' farm, picked up the milk that had been produced there, and took it to the place where it was processed and bottled.
On February 6, 1973, Jewell slipped and fell in the Beckstines' "milking parlor." In reconstructing this accident, the following diagram will be useful. It was not made a part of the record but will serve in a general way to clarify what the milking parlor looked like.
[ 255 Pa. Super. Page 241]
[ 255 Pa. Super. Page 242]
At milking time Beckstine, or his wife, would go to the east end of the milking parlor, open a manually operated door, and admit four cows from the holding area outside the parlor; the cows would take their places in milking stalls along one side of the milking "pit". The milking pit is a sunken area in the middle of the parlor, 28 inches deep, where the Beckstines could more conveniently work. They would wash the cows' udders with disinfectant, attach the milk pumps, and complete the milking process, while the cows ate grain from troughs in front of them. Then, a door at the west end of the milking parlor would be opened automatically, and the cows would go out. Meanwhile, Beckstine would have gone up the three steps at the east end of the pit, opened ...