Appeal from Judgment, Court of Common Pleas, Civil Division, Philadelphia County, No. 5092 August, 1984
Harry J. Oxman, Philadelphia, for appellant.
James M. Marsh, Philadelphia, for appellee.
Cavanaugh, McEwen and Cercone, JJ.
[ 350 Pa. Super. Page 220]
On September 15, 1982, appellant's decedent, Mary Hill, was injured in an automobile collision due to the alleged negligence of the operator of another vehicle which collided with hers. The operator of the other vehicle was Rory Bryson. It is asserted that the injuries ultimately resulted in the death of Mary Hill. Almost two years after the accident, suit on behalf of the estate was brought against appellee, Acme Markets, Inc.
The complaint alleges that Bryson was employed by Acme in November, 1979, that he thereafter worked at various supermarkets and received promotions to the position of cashier. On the date of the incident, it is claimed that Bryson, who had previously suffered from acute paranoid breakdown or a toxic drug psychosis, lapsed into a "fearful mental state" caused by his job activity. As a result of this mental state, it is pleaded that Bryson left the store, got into his automobile and left the premises. It is alleged that he drove recklessly and at an excessive rate of speed and subsequently became involved in a collision with appellant's decedent's vehicle. The negligence and "willful misconduct" of Acme is stated as follows:
11. The above-described incident was caused by the negligence, carelessness, and wanton and willful misconduct of Acme and said conduct consisted in the following:
(a) Hiring and promoting Rory Bryson who was mental [sic] and emotionally unable to work at the position of cashier;
(b) Permitting Rory Bryson to continue to work at the position of cashier when it knew or should have known that he was mentally and emotionally unable to continue his work in that position;
(c) Failing to request medical information about the mental and emotional condition of Rory Bryson;
[ 350 Pa. Super. Page 221]
(d) Failing to monitor Rory Bryson's reasons for being absent from work prior ...