Appeal From Order Entered February 8, 1988, Court of Common Pleas, Civil Division, Philadelphia County No. 1440 September Term, 1983. Appeal From Order Entered February 8, 1988 Court of Common Pleas, Civil Division, Philadelphia County, No. 4235 May Term, 1983.
Jonathan S. Ziss, Philadelphia, for appellants in Nos. 738 and 739.
Howard J. Levin, Philadelphia, for Edmonds, appellee in No. 738.
Jay Lambert, Philadelphia, for MBB, appellees in No. 738.
William A. Loftus, Philadelphia, for Riccobono, appellee in No. 739.
Cavanaugh, McEwen and Popovich, JJ.
[ 384 Pa. Super. Page 586]
These cases are consolidated appeals from Orders entered on February 8, 1988 in the Court of Common Pleas for the County of Philadelphia. Appellants, Keystone Helicopter Corporation (Keystone) and Lehigh Valley Hospital Center, Inc. (LVH) are contesting the denial of their motion for late joinder of, and cross claim against, Messerschmitt-Boelkow-Blohm (Messerschmitt). Appellee Frank Riccobono is the administrator of the estate of Patricia Riccobono, deceased. Appellee Kirsten Kay Edmonds is the administratrix of the estate of Leonard Blaine Edmonds, deceased. Both Keystone and LVH are defendants in the Edmonds case. In the Riccobono case, Keystone is the sole defendant.
The cases are wrongful death actions arising from a helicopter accident. On April 27, 1982, Leonard Edmonds was one of four passengers in a motor vehicle operated by Scott Dillman. The vehicle struck a telephone pole and Dillman was killed; Edmonds sustained critical injuries. On-scene emergency medical personnel requested that Edmonds be med-evaced to Allentown Sacred Heart Hospital, (ASHH, subsequently LVH).
Pursuant to contract, Keystone provided the pilot who operated the ASHH helicopter. The hospital dispatched the helicopter to the accident scene, operated by a Keystone pilot, in order to transport Edmonds to the hospital for trauma care. Edmonds was removed from the Dillman
[ 384 Pa. Super. Page 587]
vehicle and placed in the helicopter. Tragically, the helicopter crashed shortly after take-off killing everyone on board. The passengers were: Edmonds; Patricia Riccobono, a paramedic; Jeanette Christ, a registered nurse; and the pilot, James Landis.
On May 20, 1983, the Riccobono suit was filed naming Keystone as the sole defendant.
The Edmonds action was instituted on September 13, 1983. Named as defendants, in addition to Keystone and LVH (formerly ASHH), were: Messerschmitt, the designer and manufacturer of the helicopter; M.B.B., Inc., Messerschmitt's United States sales distributor; and Adella Dillman, both as the administratrix of the estate of Scott Dillman and in her own right.
By order dated January 31, 1984, the Edmonds and Riccobono cases were consolidated for trial.
On May 15, 1984, Keystone was denied leave to join Adella Dillman as an additional defendant in the Riccobono case. Similarly, on January 18, 1985, Keystone was denied leave to join two bars as additional defendants in both Edmonds and Riccobono. These latter two orders were appealed to this court. On May 30, 1986, a panel of our court affirmed the decision of the ...