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Angelo Scaricamazza Wins General Liability Directed Verdict
Written on Friday, June 24, 2016

On Friday, April 29, 2016, Naulty partner Angelo L. Scaricamazza won a directed verdict on behalf of his client - a regional public transit carrier. The case was tried in the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas before the Honorable Marlene Lachman from Wednesday, April 27, 2016 through Friday, April 29, 2016. The case concerned allegations that the train operator failed to brake in time to avoid a collision with a vehicle partially stopped on the tracks.

During the course of the trial, Angelo presented a safety inspector who testified that the train operator would not have been able to see the vehicle until it was within 638 feet of the train. He also testified that sand from the brakes - indicating the moment when braking began - was found 618 feet from site of the collision; nevertheless, the train came to a stop 200 feet past the vehicle. Subsequently, the train operator testified that the dark and rainy conditions made it more difficult than usual to see the vehicle. Angelo argued that the train operator acted properly and there was no way to stop the train in time to avoid the collision.

At the conclusion of the defense case, Angelo made a motion for a directed verdict; he argued that the plaintiff had not presented enough evidence for a jury to reasonably conclude that the plaintiff had met the burden of proof. Judge Lachman then ruled that despite plaintiff's counsel's claims that the train operator was traveling too quickly and had not kept an assured clear distance, there was insufficient evidence to support these allegations.