Appeal from the Order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board in case of Kenneth R. Howard v. St. Joe Zinc, No. A-77862.
Bruce E. Woodske, Reed, Luce, Good, Tosh, Kunselman & McGregor, for petitioner.
Alexander J. Pentecost, for respondent, Kenneth R. Howard.
Judges Mencer, Blatt and MacPhail, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge MacPhail.
[ 59 Pa. Commw. Page 364]
This case presents the issue of whether the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board (Board) may increase a referee's award for facial disfigurement on the basis of the Board's independent observations of the Claimant.*fn1
[ 59 Pa. Commw. Page 365]
Kenneth R. Howard (Claimant), while in the course of his employment, sustained serious and permanent facial disfigurement of an unsightly nature when he was splashed by hot metal. After a hearing and personal view of the Claimant, the referee described Claimant's disfigurement in his finding as
a number of scattered irregular shaped light pigmented spots on the right side of his face. The loss of flesh and some scarring on the right lobe of the nostril. A loss of flesh with some red pigmentation of the left upper ear lobe. A light pigmented scar that varies in width from approximately one inch down to a quarter inch, it extends from behind the ear down the base of the left jaw to within an inch and a half of the Adam's apple.
Under the provisions of Section 306(c)(22) of The Pennsylvania Workmen's Compensation Act (Act), Act of June 2, 1915, P.L. 736, as amended, 77 P.S. § 513 (22)*fn2 the referee awarded Claimant 40 weeks of compensation at the rate of $227.00 per week.
On Claimant's appeal to the Board, the Board noted that it had observed the Claimant and described Claimant's disfigurement as follows:
The Claimant exhibited extensive scarring of the left cheek, left ear and nose, and behind the right ear. There ...