Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, in the case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Transportation, Bureau of Driver Licensing v. Joseph Robert Portella, No. 3966 May Term, 1986.
Donald H. Poorman, Assistant Counsel, with him, Harold H. Cramer, Assistant Chief Counsel, and John L. Heaton, Chief Counsel, for appellant.
No appearance for appellee.
President Judge Crumlish, Jr., Judge Colins, and Senior Judge Blatt, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Colins.
[ 116 Pa. Commw. Page 136]
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, Bureau of Driver Licensing (DOT) appeals the decision of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County (trial court) which suspended Joseph Robert Portella's (appellee) motorcycle license and registration for three months.
DOT notified appellee that his operating privilege was being suspended and his vehicle registration was being revoked pursuant to Section 1785 of the Vehicle Code (Code), 75 Pa. C. S. § 1785, for failing to maintain insurance on his motor vehicle (a motorcycle) at the
[ 116 Pa. Commw. Page 137]
time of his reportable accident of February 20, 1986. The trial court, after a de novo hearing, ordered a suspension of appellee's Class 5 motorcycle license, and did not apply the three-month suspension to appellee's Class 1 driver's license. DOT appeals that order.
DOT argues that the trial court erred in limiting appellee's suspension to his motorcycle license. The trial court, DOT contends, should have suspended appellee's operating privilege, thereby prohibiting appellee from driving in this Commonwealth under any license. For the following reasons, we agree.
We note that a trial court's decision in a license suspension case cannot be disturbed on appeal unless its findings are not supported by substantial evidence, erroneous conclusions of law have been made, or the decision exhibits a manifest abuse of discretion. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Driver Licensing v. Belle, 105 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 468, 524 A.2d 1060 (1987).
Section 1785 of the Code states:
If the department determines that the owner of a motor vehicle involved in an accident requiring notice to a police department pursuant to Section 3746 (relating to immediate notice of accident to police department) did not maintain financial responsibility on the motor vehicle at the time of the accident, the department shall suspend the operating privilege of ...