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RICHARD E. TEMPLE v. MILMONT FIRE CO. AND TOWNSHIP RIDLEY (05/13/87)

decided: May 13, 1987.

RICHARD E. TEMPLE, APPELLANT
v.
MILMONT FIRE CO. AND TOWNSHIP OF RIDLEY, APPELLEES



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County in the case of Richard E. Temple v. Milmont Fire Company and Township of Ridley, No. 80-12365.

COUNSEL

Jeffrey M. Stopford, for appellant.

James J. Donohue, with him, James D. Shomper, Of Counsel: White and Williams, for appellee, Milmont Fire Co.

Ralph B. D'Iorio, Cramp, D'Iorio, McConchie & Forbes, P.C., for appellee, Ridley Township.

President Judge Crumlish, Jr., Judge Barry, and Senior Judge Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Senior Judge Barbieri.

Author: Barbieri

[ 106 Pa. Commw. Page 122]

Appellant, Richard E. Temple, appeals here an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County granting the motions of the Appellees, the Township of Ridley (Township) and the Milmont Fire Company (Fire Company), for summary judgment. We affirm.

Appellant was a member of the Milmont Fire Company, a volunteer fire company, when he was injured during his participation in a fire fighting demonstration at Our Lady of Peace School on October 21, 1978. The demonstration was part of the Fire Company's Fire

[ 106 Pa. Commw. Page 123]

Prevention Week activities. During the demonstration, Appellant was "pompiering," i.e. climbing down a rope, from the basket of a fire truck when the rope broke and he fell approximately thirty to forty feet to a paved parking lot below. As a result of his fall, Appellant sustained compound fractures of two bones of his right arm, compound fractures of all three bones in his right leg, as well as other injuries. Subsequent to the accident, Appellant received disability benefits pursuant to The Pennsylvania Workmen's Compensation Act (Act), Act of June 2, 1915, P.L. 736, as amended, 77 P.S. §§ 1-1031. He signed a final receipt for workmen's compensation benefits on April 2, 1979 after collecting disability benefits from October 21, 1978, until his return to work on April 23, 1979.

On September 15, 1980, Appellant filed a negligence action against the Township and the Fire Company in which he alleged that the rope that broke, causing his injuries, was negligently maintained. Both the Township and Fire Company raised the affirmative defense of Section 303 of the Act, 77 P.S. § 481, as a bar to his negligence suit. Following discovery, the Appellees filed a Motion for Summary Judgment on the grounds that the Appellant was barred by the provisions of the Act from bringing suit. The common pleas court granted the Appellees' motion based upon Sections 303 and 601 of the Act, 77 P.S. §§ 481 and 1031. Appeal to this Court followed.

In this appeal, Appellant raises numerous assignments of error that we shall discuss in turn. In reviewing a grant of summary judgment, the appellate court must accept as true all well-pleaded facts in the non-moving party's pleadings and give the non-moving party the benefit of all reasonable inferences to be drawn therefrom. ...


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