No. 252 Harrisburg, 1983, Appeal from the Order Entered June 16, 1983 in the Court of Common Pleas of York County, Civil Division, No. 82-S-1844
William T. Hast, Assistant District Attorney, York, for appellant.
Daniel W. Shoemaker, York, for appellee.
Spaeth, President Judge, and Cirillo and Cercone, JJ.
[ 335 Pa. Super. Page 467]
Appellant, David H. Lloyd, an independent trucker, entered into an agreement with appellee, East Texas Motor Freight (East Texas). Lloyd, using his own tractor-trailer combination, agreed to haul a load of insulation owned by Monsanto Corporation from California to Ohio. The trip lease agreement between the parties provided in pertinent part:
In the event of any loss or damage or destruction to cargo or property damage or bodily injury to any third person, the Lessor does hereby agree to assume and be fully responsible for any such damage and in the event payment shall be made by the Lessee herein, Lessor does hereby agree to indemnify and hold the Lessee harmless for any and all claims. In the event the Lessee's insurance
[ 335 Pa. Super. Page 468]
company is required to make payment therefore, then, and in that event, the insurance company shall be subrogated to the rights of the Lessee against the Lessor herein.
In route to his destination, Lloyd encountered a severe rainstorm which damaged his load. East Texas paid Monsanto's claim for the damage incurred and then sought indemnification from Lloyd. Lloyd refused.
East Texas filed a complaint in assumpsit against Lloyd and Lloyd filed an answer, new matter, and a counterclaim. The case went to trial before a jury. At the conclusion of Lloyd's case, the court directed a verdict in favor of East Texas. Post-trial motions were filed and argued before the court en banc and subsequently denied. Judgment was entered and appellant perfected this appeal.
On appeal, Lloyd claims that the entry of a directed verdict improperly removed five issues from the jury's consideration. In reviewing such allegations we must keep in mind that:
In an appeal from a directed verdict, the Appellate Court must consider the evidence and all reasonable inferences in the light most favorable to the appellant. Litwinko v. Gray, 267 Pa. Super. 541, 407 A.2d 42 (1979). If a jury could have reasonably concluded on the basis of that evidence and those inferences that liability should rest with the appellee, then the decision to direct a verdict was in error. See Cox v. Equitable Gas Co., 227 Pa. Super. 153, 324 A.2d 516 (1974). If there is ...