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CASES PART II (TORTS & DAMAGES) Based on this provision of law, the requisites of quasi-delict are the following:

MEANING OF GROSS NEGLIGENCE (a) there must be an act or omission;

Chan vs INC
(b) such act or omission causes damage to another;
-em-

Facts: (c) such act or commission is caused by fault or negligence; and

The Aringay Shell Gasoline Station is owned by Chan. It is located in Sta. Rita East, (d) there is no pre-existing contractual relation between the parties.
Aringay, La Union, and bounded on the south by a chapel of the respondent.

The gasoline station supposedly needed additional sewerage and septic tanks for its All the requisites are attendant in the instant case. The tortious act was the
washrooms. In view of this, the services of Dioscoro "Ely" Yoro (Yoro), a retired excavation which caused damage to the respondent because it was done
general of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, was procured by petitioner, as the surreptitiously within its premises and it may have affected the foundation of the
former was allegedly a construction contractor in the locality. chapel. The excavation on respondent’s premises was caused by fault. Finally, there
was no pre-existing contractual relation between the petitioner and Yoro on the one
Petitioner and Yoro executed a Memorandum of Agreement which stipulated that hand, and the respondent on the other.
“any damage within or outside the property of the first party (Chan) incurred during
the digging shall be borne by the second party (Yoro)”. Further, the MOA discusses
For the damage caused to respondent, petitioner and Yoro are jointly liable as they
the division of wealth in case hidden treasure is found during the digging. After some
are joint tortfeasors. Verily, the responsibility of two or more persons who are liable
time, Chan was informed by the members of the INC that the digging traversed and
for a quasi-delict is solidary.
penetrated a portion of the land belonging to the latter. The foundation of the chapel
was affected as a tunnel was dug directly under it to the damage and prejudice of the
respondent. The heavy reliance of petitioner in paragraph 4 of the MOA cited earlier cannot steer
him clear of any liability.
A complaint against petitioner was filed by the respondent before the RTC.

Chan avers that no liability should attach to him by laying the blame solely on Yoro. As a general rule, joint tortfeasors are all the persons who command, instigate,
He argues that the MOA executed between him and Yoro is the law between them promote, encourage, advise, countenance, cooperate in, aid or abet the commission
and must be given weight by the courts. of a tort, or who approve of it after it is done, if done for their benefit.

Indubitably, petitioner and Yoro cooperated in committing the tort. They even had
provisions in their MOA as to how they would divide the treasure if any is found
Issue:
within or outside petitioner’s property line. Thus, the MOA, instead of exculpating
WN the MOA entered into by Chan and Yoro has the effect of making the latter solely petitioner from liability, is the very noose that insures that he be so declared as liable.
responsible for damages to the respondent?
Besides, petitioner cannot claim that he did not know that the excavation traversed
the respondent’s property. In fact, he had two (2) of his employees actually observe
the diggings, his security guard and his engineer Teofilo Oller.
Held:

No. Chan is still liable. MARINDUQUE IRON MINES AGENTS, INC., Petitioner, vs. THE
WORKMEN’S COMPENSATION COMMISSION, THE HEIRS OF PEDRO
Article 2176 of the New Civil Code provides: MAMADOR and GERONIMO MA. COLL, Respondents.
-zyka-
ART. 2176. – Whoever by act or omission causes damage to another, there being
FACTS:
fault or negligence, is obliged to pay for the damage done. Such fault or negligence,
if there is no pre-existing contractual relation between the parties, is called a quasi- On August 23, 1951, at 6:00 a.m. in Bo. Sumangga, Mogpog, Marinduque, the
delict and is governed by the provisions of this Chapter. deceased Mamador together with other laborers of the Respondent-corporation
(Marinduque Iron Mines Agents Inc.) boarded a truck belonging to the latter, which There is no doubt that mere riding on haulage truck or stealing a ride thereon is not
was then driven by one Procopio Macunat, also employed by the corporation, and on negligence, ordinarily. It couldn’t be, because transportation by truck is not
its way to their place of work at the mine camp at Talantunan, while trying to dangerous per se. It is argued that there was notorious negligence in this particular
overtake another truck on the company road, it turned over and hit a coconut tree, instance because there was the employer’s prohibition. Many courts hold that
resulting in the death of said Mamador and injury to the others. violation of a statute or ordinance constitutes negligence per se. Others consider the
circumstances.
Procopio Macunat was prosecuted, convicted and sentenced to indemnify the heirs of
However, there is practical unanimity in the proposition that violation of a rule
the deceased. [Criminal Case No. 1491] He has paid nothing however, to the latter.
promulgated by a Commission or board is not negligence per se; but it may be an
The Marinduque Iron Mines Agents Inc. questions by certiorari the order of the evidence of negligence.
Workmen’s Compensation Commissioner confirming the referee’s award of
compensation to the heirs of Pedro Mamador for his accidental death. This order of the employer (prohibition rather) couldn’t be of a greater obligation
than the rule of a Commission or board. And the referee correctly considered this
Petitioner maintains that this claim is barred by section 6 of the Workmen’s violation as possible evidence of negligence; but it declared that under the
Compensation Law, because (a) Macunat was prosecuted and required to indemnify circumstance, the laborer could not be declared to have acted with negligence.
the heirs of the deceased and (b) an amicable settlement was concluded between Correctly, it is believed, since the prohibition had nothing to do with personal safety
said heirs and Macunat. of the riders.

“Sec. 6. Liability of third parties. — In case an employee suffers an injury for which Moreover, the Commission has not declared that the prohibition was known to
compensation is due under this Act by any other person besides his employer, it shall Mamador. Yet the employer does not point out in the record evidence to that effect.
be optional with such injured employee either to claim compensation from his Supposing Mamador knew the prohibition, said the referee, “can we truthfully say
that he boarded the fatal truck with full apprehension of the existence of the danger,
employer, under this Act, or sue such other person for damages, in accordance with
if any at all, that an ordinary prudent man would try to avoid? I do not believe so,
law; xxx”
and even in the presence of doubt, the same must be resolved in his favor. Unless of
It is the Petitioner’s contention that Criminal Case No. 1491 and its outcome course, we can attribute to him a desire to end his life. Nowhere in the records of this
case can we find the slightest insinuation of that desire.”
constituted an election by the employee (or his heirs) to sue the third person, such
election having the effect of releasing the employer. However, Criminal Case No. Nevertheless, even granting there was negligence, it surely was not “notorious”
1491 was not a suit for damages against the third person, it being alleged, without negligence, which we have interpreted to mean the same thing as “gross” negligence
contradiction that the heirs did not intervene therein and have not so far received the 3 — implying “conscious indifference to consequences” “pursuing a course of conduct
indemnity ordered by the court. which would naturally and probably result in injury” “utter disregard of
consequences.” (38 Am. Jur., 691) Getting or accepting a free ride on the company’s
As to the alleged “amicable settlement,” The contention may not be sustained, haulage truck couldn’t be gross negligence, because as the referee found, “no danger
inasmuch as all the widow promised was to forego the offender’s criminal or risk was apparent.”
prosecution.

In addition, Petitioner claims that the deceased violated the employer’s prohibition TEST TO DETERMINE NEGLIGENCE
against laborers riding the haulage trucks, thus, such violation was the laborer’s
“notorious negligence” which, under the law, precludes recovery.
Picart vs. Smith
ISSUE: -pochi-
WON there is “notorious negligence” on part of the laborer which precludes recovery.
FACTS:
HELD: Amado Picart was riding on his pony. However, before he had gotten half way across
the bridge, the defendant approached from the opposite direction in an automobile.
[Article 1173 of the New Civil Code defines negligence as the omission of that degree As the defendant neared the bridge he saw a horseman on it and blew his horn to
of diligence which is required by the nature of the obligation and corresponding to give warning of his approach. However, being perturbed by the rapidity of the
the circumstances of persons, time and place.] approach, he pulled the pony closely up against the railing on the right side of the
bridge instead of going to the left.
As the automobile approached, the defendant guided it toward his left, that being the Applying this test to the conduct of the defendant in the present case we think that
proper side of the road for the machine. In so doing the defendant assumed that the negligence is clearly established. A prudent man, placed in the position of the
horseman would move to the other side. Seeing that the pony was apparently defendant, would in our opinion, have recognized that the course which he was
quiet, the defendant, instead of veering to the right while yet some distance pursuing was fraught with risk, and would therefore have foreseen harm to
away or slowing down, continued to approach directly toward the horse the horse and the rider as reasonable consequence of that course. Under
without diminution of speed. these circumstances the law imposed on the defendant the duty to guard against the
threatened harm.
When he had gotten quite near, there being then no possibility of the horse
getting across to the other side, the defendant quickly turned his car to escape Court held: As the defendant started across the bridge, he had the right to assume
hitting the horse but in so doing the automobile passed in such close proximity to the that the horse and the rider would pass over to the proper side; but as he moved
animal that it became frightened and turned its body across the bridge with its head toward the center of the bridge it was demonstrated to his eyes that this
toward the railing. In so doing, the horse fell and its rider was thrown off with some would not be done; and he must in a moment have perceived that it was too late
violence. for the horse to cross with safety in front of the moving vehicle.

Thus, the petitioner sought to recover from Frank Smith, Jr., the sum of P31,000, as In the nature of things this change of situation occurred while the automobile was yet
damages alleged to have been caused by an automobile driven by the some distance away; and from this moment it was not longer within the power of the
defendant. plaintiff to escape being run down by going to a place of greater safety. The control
of the situation had then passed entirely to the defendant; and it was his
Court of First Instance: Absolved the defendant from liability. duty either to bring his car to an immediate stop or, seeing that there were
no other persons on the bridge, to take the other side and pass sufficiently far
Petitioner appealed. away from the horse to avoid the danger of collision.

Instead of doing this, the defendant ran straight on until he was almost
ISSUE: upon the horse. He was, we think, deceived into doing this by the fact that the
Whether or not the defendant in maneuvering his car in the manner above described horse had not yet exhibited fright. But in view of the known nature of horses, there
was guilty of negligence such as gives rise to a civil obligation to repair the damage was an appreciable risk that, if the animal in question was unacquainted with
done? YES, defendant was guilty of negligence. automobiles, he might get excited and jump under the conditions which here
confronted him. When the defendant exposed the horse and rider to this danger he
RULING: was, in our opinion, negligent in the eye of the law.

The test by which to determine the existence of negligence in a particular


case may be stated as follows: Did the defendant in doing the alleged
negligent act use that person would have used in the same situation? If DISPOSITIVE:
not, then he is guilty of negligence. xxx that the judgment of the lower court must be reversed, and judgment is her
rendered that the plaintiff recover of the defendant the sum of two hundred pesos
The existence of negligence in a given case is not determined by reference to (P200), with costs of other instances. The sum here awarded is estimated to include
the personal judgment of the actor in the situation before him. Xxx The the value of the horse, medical expenses of the plaintiff, the loss or damage
question as to what would constitute the conduct of a prudent man in a given occasioned to articles of his apparel, and lawful interest on the whole to the date of
situation must of course be always determined in the light of human this recovery.
experience and in view of the facts involved in the particular case.

xxx Stated in these terms, the proper criterion for determining the
existence of negligence in a given case is this: Conduct is said to be
negligent when a prudent man in the position of the tortfeasor would have
foreseen that an effect harmful to another was sufficiently probable to
warrant his foregoing conduct or guarding against its consequences.
CONCEPT OF EMERGENCY RULE The test for determining whether or not a person is negligent in doing an act
whereby injury or damage results to the person or property of another is this: Would
a prudent man in the position of the person to whom negligence is
Gan vs. CA attributed foresee harm to the person injured as a reasonable consequence
-monica- of the course about to be pursued?

Petitioner: Hedy Gan y Yu (Accused) A corollary rule is what is known in the law as the emergency rule. "Under that
Respondent: CA rule,
- one who suddenly finds himself in a place of danger and
FACTS: - is required to act without time to consider the best means that may
be adopted to avoid the impending danger,
In front of a house were two vehicles, a truck and a jeepney parked on one side of
the road, one following the other about two to three meters from each other. As is not guilty of negligence, if he fails to adopt what subsequently and upon
Hedy Gan’s car (Toyota) approached the place where the two vehicles were parked, a reflection may appear to have been a better method, unless the emergency in
vehicle coming from the opposite direction followed by another tried to overtake and which he finds himself is brought about by his own negligence."
bypass the one in front of it and thereby encroached the lane of the car driven by the
accused.
In the case at bar, we find the petitioner not guilty of the crime of Simple
To avoid a head-on collision with the oncoming vehicle, Gan swerved to the right and Imprudence resulting in Homicide.
as a consequence, the front bumper of the Toyota Crown Sedan hit an old man
who was about to cross, pinning him against the rear of the parked jeepney. The course of action suggested by the appellate court would seem reasonable were it
not for the fact that such suggestion did not take into account the amount of
The force of the impact caused the parked jeepney to move forward hitting the rear time afforded petitioner to react to the situation she was in. For it is
of the parts truck ahead of it. The pedestrian was injured, the Toyota Sedan was undeniable that the suggested course of action presupposes sufficient time for
appellant to analyze the situation confronting her and to ponder on which of the
damaged on its front, the jeep suffered damages on its rear and front paints, and the
different courses of action would result in the least possible harm to herself and to
truck sustained scratches at the wooden portion of its rear. A certain Isidoro Casino
others.
was pronounced dead.

Due to the lack of eyewitnesses, no evidence was presented by the prosecution


An information for Homicide thru Reckless Imprudence was filed against petitioner.
with respect to the relative distances of petitioner to the parked jeepney and the
Trial Court: rendered judgment finding petitioner guilty beyond reasonable doubt for
oncoming overtaking vehicle that would tend to prove that petitioner did have
the crime of Homicide thru Reckless Imprudence
sufficient time to reflect on the consequences of her instant decision to swerve
CA: Modified TC ruling to Crime of Homicide thru Simple Imprudence and to
her car to the light without stepping on her brakes.
indemnify the heirs of Isidoro Casino in the sum of P12,000.00
- CA suggested a course of action that petitioner should have taken: “accused
should have stepped on the brakes when she saw the car going in the Therefore, the "emergency rule" enunciated above applies with full force to the case
opposite direction followed by another which overtook the first by passing at bar and consequently absolve petitioner from any criminal negligence in connection
with the incident under consideration.
towards its left xxx”

ISSUE: DISPOSITIVE:
WHEREFORE, judgment is hereby rendered acquitting petitioner HEDY GAN y YU of
the crime of Homicide thru Simple Imprudence. She is no longer liable for the
WON petitioner is negligent which caused the injury or damage? NOT NEGLIGENT
P12,000.00 civil indemnity awarded by the appellate court to the heirs of the
victim.
RULING:
 He alleged in his defense that the left rear portion of plaintiff's car was
protruding as it was then "at a standstill diagonally" on the outer portion of
the right lane.
 He confirmed the testimony of plaintiff's witness that after being bumped
Valenzuela vs CA the car of the plaintiff swerved to the right and hit another car parked on
-ron- the sidewalk. Defendants counterclaimed for damages, alleging that plaintiff
was reckless or negligent, as she was not a licensed driver.
Facts:
The lower court found defendant Richard Li guilty of gross negligence and liable for
This is an action to recover damages based on quasi-delict, for serious physical damages under Article 2176 of the Civil Code. The trial court likewise held Alexander
injuries sustained in a vehicular accident. Commercial, Inc., Li's employer, jointly and severally liable for damages pursuant to
Plaintiff's version of the accident is as follows: Article 2180.

 At around 2:00 in the morning of June 24, 1990, plaintiff Ma. Lourdes Defendants filed an Omnibus Motion for New Trial and for Reconsideration. The trial
Valenzuela was driving a car from her restaurant to her home. She was court denied the motion. Defendants forthwith filed an appeal with the respondent
travelling with a companion, Cecilia Ramon, heading to Manila. Court of Appeals. Court of Appeals found that there was "ample basis from the
 She noticed something wrong with her tires; she stopped at a lighted place. evidence of record for the trial court's finding that the plaintiff's car was properly
She has been told by the people present that her rear right tire was flat and parked at the right, beside the sidewalk when it was bumped by defendant's car."
that she cannot reach her home in that car's condition. Consequently, both parties assail the respondent court's decision by filing two
 She parked along the sidewalk, about 1-1/2 feet away, put on her separate petitions before this Court:
emergency lights, alighted from the car, and went to the rear to open the
trunk.  Richard Li, in G.R. No. 117944, contends that he should not be held liable
 She was standing at the left side of the rear of her car pointing to the tools for damages because the proximate cause of the accident was Ma. Lourdes
to a man who will help her fix the tire when she was suddenly bumped by a Valenzuela's own negligence. Alternatively, he argues that in the event that
car driven by defendant Richard Li and registered in the name of defendant this Court finds him negligent, such negligence ought to be mitigated by the
Alexander Commercial, Inc. contributory negligence of Valenzuela.
 Because of the impact plaintiff was thrown against the windshield of the car  On the other hand, in G.R. No. 115024, Ma. Lourdes Valenzuela assails the
of the defendant, which was destroyed, and then fell to the ground. She was respondent court's decision insofar as it absolves Alexander Commercial, Inc.
pulled out from under defendant's car. Plaintiff's left leg was severed up to from liability as the owner of the car driven by Richard Li and insofar as it
the middle of her thigh, with only some skin connected to the rest of the reduces the amount of the actual and moral damages awarded by the trial
body. court.
 She was brought to a Medical Center where she was found to have a
"traumatic amputation, leg, left up to above the knee". She was confined in Issues:
the hospital for twenty (20) days and was eventually fitted with an artificial
1. Whether or not Valenzuela is guilty of contributory negligence in parking her
leg. The expenses for the hospital confinement (P120,000.00) and the cost
car alongside Aurora Boulevard, which entire area Li points out, is a no
of the artificial leg (P27,000.00) were paid by defendants from the car
parking zone. (no)
insurance.
2. Whether or not Richard Li is guilty of negligence in driving his company-
Defendant Richard Li denied that he was negligent: issued car. (yes)
3. Whether or not Alexander Commercial, Inc. is also liable as the owner of the
 He was on his way home, travelling at 55 kph; considering that it was car driven by Richard Li. (yes)
raining, visibility was affected and the road was wet. Traffic was light.
 He was driving along the inner portion of the right lane when he was Ruling:
suddenly confronted with a car coming from the opposite direction,
Valenzuela's version of the incident was fully corroborated by an uninterested
travelling at 80 kph, with "full bright lights".
witness, Rogelio Rodriguez. On trial, he testified that he observed a car being driven
 Temporarily blinded, he instinctively swerved to the right to avoid colliding
at a "very fast" speed. When he saw the car hit Valenzuela, he crossed the street,
with the oncoming vehicle, and bumped plaintiff's car, which he did not see
noting that a man reeking with the smell of liquor had alighted from the offending
because it was midnight blue in color, with no parking lights or early warning
vehicle to survey the incident. Equally important, Rodriguez declared that he
device, and the area was poorly lighted.
observed Valenzuela's car parked parallel and very near the sidewalk, contrary to Li's
allegation that Valenzuela's car was close to the center of the right lane. We agree The circumstances established by the evidence adduced in the court below plainly
that as between Li's "self-serving" asseverations and the observations of a witness demonstrate that Li was grossly negligent in driving his Mitsubishi Lancer. It bears
who did not even know the accident victim personally and who immediately gave a emphasis that he was driving at a fast speed at about 2:00 A.M. after a heavy
statement of the incident similar to his testimony to the investigator immediately after downpour had settled into a drizzle rendering the street slippery. There is ample
the incident, the latter's testimony deserves greater weight. testimonial evidence on record to show that he was under the influence of liquor.

1. We agree with the respondent court that Valenzuela was not guilty of contributory 3. We agree with the respondent court that the relationship in question is not based
negligence. on the principle of respondeat superior, which holds the master liable for acts of the
servant, but that of pater familias, in which the liability ultimately falls upon the
Contributory negligence is conduct on the part of the injured party, contributing as a employer, for his failure to exercise the diligence of a good father of the family in the
legal cause to the harm he has suffered, which falls below the standard to which he is selection and supervision of his employees. It is up to this point, however, that our
required to conform for his own protection. Based on the foregoing definition, the agreement with the respondent court ends. Utilizing the bonus pater familias
standard or act to which, according to petitioner Li, Valenzuela ought to have standard expressed in Article 2180 of the Civil Code, we believe Li's employer,
conformed for her own protection was not to park at all at any point of Aurora Alexander Commercial, Inc. is jointly and solidarily liable for the damage caused by
Boulevard, a no parking zone. We cannot agree. the accident
Under the "emergency rule" adopted by this Court in Gan vs. Court of Appeals, an The employer's primary liability under the concept of pater familias embodied by Art
individual who suddenly finds himself in a situation of danger and is required to act 2180 (in relation to Art. 2176) of the Civil Code is quasi-delictual or tortious in
without much time to consider the best means that may be adopted to avoid the character. His liability is relieved on a showing that he exercised the diligence of a
impending danger, is not guilty of negligence if he fails to undertake what good father of the family in the selection and supervision of its employees.
subsequently and upon reflection may appear to be a better solution, unless the
emergency was brought by his own negligence. In providing for a company car for business use and/or for furthering the company's
image, a company owes a responsibility to the public to see to it that the managerial
While the emergency rule applies to those cases in which reflective thought, or the or other employees to whom it entrusts virtually unlimited use of a company issued
opportunity to adequately weigh a threatening situation is absent, the conduct which car can use the company issue capably and responsibly.
is required of an individual in such cases is dictated not exclusively by the suddenness
of the event which absolutely negates thoroughful care, but by the over-all nature of Li was an Assistant Manager of Alexander Commercial, Inc. He admitted that his
the circumstances. A woman driving a vehicle suddenly crippled by a flat tire on a functions as Assistant Manager did not require him to scrupulously keep normal office
rainy night will not be faulted for stopping at a point which is both convenient for her hours as he was required quite often to perform work outside the office, visiting
to do so and which is not a hazard to other motorists. She is not expected to run the prospective buyers and contacting and meeting with company clients. These
entire boulevard in search for a parking zone or turn on a dark street or alley where meetings, clearly, were not strictly confined to routine hours because, as a
she would likely find no one to help her. It would be hazardous for her not to stop managerial employee tasked with the job of representing his company with its clients,
and assess the emergency (simply because the entire length of Aurora Boulevard is a meetings with clients were both social as well as work-related functions.
no-parking zone) because the hobbling vehicle would be both a threat to her safety
and to other motorists. In the instant case, Valenzuela, upon reaching that portion of Alexander Commercial, Inc. has not demonstrated, to our satisfaction, that it
Aurora Boulevard close to A. Lake St., noticed that she had a flat tire. To avoid exercised the care and diligence of a good father of the family in entrusting its
putting herself and other motorists in danger, she did what was best under the company car to Li. No allegations were made as to whether the company took the
situation. steps necessary to determine or ascertain the driving proficiency and history of Li, to
whom it gave full and unlimited use of a company car. Not having been able to
Under the circumstances described, Valenzuela did exercise the standard reasonably overcome the burden of demonstrating that it should be absolved of liability for
dictated by the emergency and could not be considered to have contributed to the entrusting its company car to Li, said company, based on the principle of bonus pater
unfortunate circumstances which eventually led to the amputation of one of her lower familias, ought to be jointly and severally liable with the former for the injuries
extremities. The emergency which led her to park her car on a sidewalk in Aurora sustained by Ma. Lourdes Valenzuela during the accident.
Boulevard was not of her own making, and it was evident that she had taken all
reasonable precautions.

2. Obviously, the only negligence ascribable was the negligence of Li on the night of MARIKINA AUTO LINE TRANSPORT CORPORATION AND FREDDIE L.
the accident. "Negligence, as it is commonly understood is conduct which creates an SUELTO, VS. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES AND ERLINDA V.
undue risk of harm to others." It is the failure to observe that degree of care, VALDELLON
precaution, and vigilance which the circumstances justly demand, whereby such other -gaddi-
person suffers injury.
Facts: * Gan v. Court of Appeals- Sudden Emergency Rule- One who suddenly finds
himself in a place of danger, and is required to act without time to consider the best
* Erlinda V. Valdellon- owner of a two-door commercial apartment located at No. means that may be adopted to avoid the impending danger, is not guilty of
31 Kamias Road, Quezon City. negligence if he fails to adopt what subsequently and upon reflection may appear to
* The Marikina Auto Line Transport Corporation (MALTC)- the owner- have been a better method unless the emergency in which he finds himself is brought
operator of a passenger bus. about by his own negligence.
* Suelto- employee of MALTC, was assigned as the regular driver of the bus. * Under Section 37 of Republic Act No. 4136, as amended, otherwise known as
- at around 2:00 pm, was driving the aforementioned passenger bus along the Land Transportation and Traffic Code, motorists are mandated to drive and
Kamias Road, Kamuning, Quezon City, going towards EDSA. The bus operate vehicles on the right side of the road or highway.
suddenly swerved to the right and struck the terrace of the commercial * Section 35 of the law provides, thus: Restriction as to speed.—(a) Any person
apartment owned by Valdellon located along Kamuning Road. driving a motor vehicle on a highway shall drive the same at a careful and
* Valdellon- filed a criminal complaint for reckless imprudence resulting in damage prudent speed, not greater nor less than is reasonable and proper. . .
to property against Suelto. * Article 2185 of the New Civil Code provides that "unless there is proof to the
* An Information was filed with the RTC of Quezon City contrary, it is presumed that a person driving a motor vehicle has been negligent, if
* Suelto- during the trial, testified that at 2:00 p.m., he was driving the bus on its at the time of mishap, he was violating any traffic regulation." By his own admission,
way to Ayala Avenue, Makati, Metro Manila. When he reached the corner petitioner Suelto violated the Land Transportation and Traffic Code when he suddenly
of K-H Street at Kamias Road, Quezon City, a passenger jeepney swerved the bus to the right, thereby causing damage to the property of private
suddenly crossed from EDSA going to V. Luna and swerved to the lane respondent.
occupied by the bus. Suelto had to swerve the bus to the right upon which it * It is clear from the photographs submitted by the prosecution that the commercial
hit the side front of the terrace of Valdellon's two-door apartment. apartment of Dr. Valdellon sustained heavy damage. It is quite reasonable to
- On cross-examination, declared that he saw the passenger jeepney when conclude that, at the time of the impact, the bus was traveling at a high speed when
it was a meter away from the bus. Before then, he had seen some Suelto tried to avoid the passenger jeepney. The damages could not have been
passenger jeepneys on the right trying to overtake one another. caused except by a speeding bus. Had the accused not been speeding, he could
* RTC- rendered judgment finding Suelto guilty beyond reasonable doubt of have easily reduced his speed and come to a full stop when he noticed the jeep.
reckless imprudence resulting in damage to property. Were he more prudent in driving, he could have avoided the incident or even if he
* Suelto- on appeal, further alleged that he should be acquitted in the criminal case could not avoid the incident, the damages would have been less severe.
for the prosecution's failure to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt. He * The severe damages sustained could not have resulted had the accused acted as a
maintained that, in an emergency case, he was not, in law, negligent. reasonable and prudent man would. The accused was not diligent as he claims to be.
* OSG- posited, the burden was on Suelto to prove that, in swerving the bus What is more probable is that the accused had to swerve to the right and hit the
to the right, he acted on an emergency, however, he failed to discharge this commercial apartment of the plaintiff because he could not make a full stop as he
burden. was driving too fast in a usually crowded street.
* CA rendered judgment affirming the decision of the trial court.

ISSUE: W/N the prosecution failed to prove the crime charged against MCKEE vs. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT
petitioner Suelto -joy-
NO. FACTS:
* We find and so resolve that respondent People of the Philippines was able to prove
beyond reasonable doubt that petitioner Suelto swerved the bus to the right with Between nine and ten o'clock in the morning of 8 January 1977, in Pulong Pulo Bridge
recklessness, thereby causing damage to the terrace of private respondent's along MacArthur Highway, between Angeles City and San Fernando, Pampanga, a
apartment. head-on-collision took place between an International cargo truck, Loadstar, with
* We have reviewed the evidence on record and find that, as ruled by the trial court Plate No. RF912-T Philippines '76 owned by private respondents, and driven by
and the appellate court, petitioners failed to prove that petitioner acted on an Ruben Galang, and a Ford Escort car bearing Plate No. S2-850 Pampanga '76 driven
emergency caused by the sudden intrusion of a passenger jeepney into the lane of by Jose Koh. The collision resulted in the deaths of Jose Koh, Kim Koh McKee and
the bus he was driving. Loida Bondoc, and physical injuries to George Koh McKee, Christopher Koh McKee
* It was the burden of petitioners herein to prove petitioner Suelto's defense that and Araceli Koh McKee, all passengers of the Ford Escort.
he acted on an emergency, that is, he had to swerve the bus to the right to avoid
colliding with a passenger jeep coming from EDSA that had overtaken another vehicle Immediately before the collision, the cargo truck, which was loaded with two hundred
and intruded into the lane of the bus. (200) cavans of rice weighing about 10,000 kilos, was traveling southward from
Angeles City to San Fernando Pampanga, and was bound for Manila. The Ford Escort,
on the other hand, was on its way to Angeles City from San Fernando. When the
northbound car was about (10) meters away from the southern approach of the Facts:
bridge, two (2) boys suddenly darted from the right side of the road and into the lane  Spouses Dante and Leonora Cruz lodged a complaint against Sun
of the car. The boys were moving back and forth, unsure of whether to cross all the Holidays Inc with RTC for damages arising from the death of their
way to the other side or turn back. Jose Koh blew the horn of the car, swerved to the son Ruelito Cruz who perished with his wife on board the boat M/B
left and entered the lane of the truck; he then switched on the headlights of the car, Coco Beach III that capsized en route to Batangas to Puerto
applied the brakes and thereafter attempted to return to his lane. Before he could do Galera. The resort was owned and operated by respondent Sun
so, his car collided with the truck. The collision occurred in the lane of the truck, Holidays Inc.
which was the opposite lane, on the said bridge.  The stay of the newly wed Ruelito and his wife at the resort was by
As a consequence of the mishap, civil and criminal cases were filed against Galang. In virtue of a tour package-contract with respondent that included
the civil case, private respondents asserted that it was the Ford Escort car which transportation to and from the Resort and the point of departure in
"invaded and bumped (sic) the lane of the truck driven by Ruben Galang. Batangas.
 Migual Matute, scuba diving instructor gave his account on the
ISSUE: WON Jose Koh negligent incident which led to the filing of the complaint.
 According to Matute, he was with 25 other guest including
HELD: NAWP petitioners’ son and wife who trekked to the other side of the Coco
Beach Mountain.
RATIO: Negligence is the omission to do something which a reasonable man, guided
 After the boat sailed, it started to rain which became stronger
by those considerations which ordinarily regulate the conduct of human affairs, would
causing the boat to tilt from side to side. The waves got more
do, or the doing of something which a prudent and reasonable man would not do.
unwieldy. After getting hot by two big waves, M/B Coco capsized
IN THIS CASE: it is manifest that no negligence could be imputed to Jose Koh. Any putting all passengers underwater.
reasonable and ordinary prudent man would have tried to avoid running over the two  Help came after about 45 minutes. As a result of the incident, 8
boys by swerving the car away from where they were even if this would mean passengers, including petitioners’ son and his wife died.
entering the opposite lane. Avoiding such immediate peril would be the natural  Respondent denied any responsibility for the incident which it
course to take particularly where the vehicle in the opposite lane would be several considered to be fortuitous event.
 RTC dismissed the petitions which was affirmed by the Court of
meters away and could very well slow down, move to the side of the road and give
Appeals
way to the oncoming car. Moreover, under what is known as the emergency rule,
"one who suddenly finds himself in a place of danger, and is required to act without
That respondent is a private carrier which is only required to
time to consider the best means that may be adopted to avoid the impending danger,
observe ordinary diligence, that respondent in fact observed
is not guilty of negligence, if he fails to adopt what subsequently and upon reflection
extraordinary diligence in transporting its guests on board M/B
may appear to have been a better method, unless the emergency in which he finds
Coco Beach III, and that the proximate cause of the incident was a
himself is brought about by his own negligence."
squall, a fortuitous event.
Considering the sudden intrusion of the two (2) boys into the lane of the car, We find
ISSUE:
that Jose Koh adopted the best means possible in the given situation to avoid hitting
them. Applying the above test, therefore, it is clear that he was not guilty of WON the death of Ruelito Cruz and his wife was due to a fortuitous event
negligence.
HELD:

 NO.
FORTUITOUS EVENT; ELEMENTS  The following are the elements of a fortuitous event:

1) The cause of the unforeseen and unexpected occurrence, or the failure of


CRUZ VS SUN HOLIDAY INC. the debtors to comply with their obligations, must have been independent of
-jeanelle- human will;
2) The event that constituted the caso fortuito must have been impossible to (3) Whether the damage suffered by respondents is one of damnum absque
foresee, or if foreseeable, impossible to avoid; injuria
3) the occurrence must have been such as to render it impossible for the
debtors to fulfill their obligation in a normal manner; and Held:
4) the obligor must have been free form any participation in the aggravation
of the resulting injury to the creditor. (1) The obligor cannot escape liability, if upon the happening of a fortuitous
 To fully free a common carrier from any liability, the fortuitous event must event or an act of God, a corresponding fraud, negligence, delay or violation
have been the proximate cause of the loss. And it should have exercised due or contravention in any manner of the tenor of the obligation as provided in
diligence to prevent or minimize the loss before, during and after the Article 1170 of the Civil Code which results in loss or damage. Even if there
occurrence of the fortuitous event. was no contractual relation between themselves and private respondents,
 The squall that occurred during the voyage was not a fortuitous evince since they are still liable under the law on quasi-delict. Article 2176 of the Civil
it was expected under the weather condition of September 11, 2000. Code explicitly provides "whoever by act or omission causes damage to
 Evidence shows that M/B Coco Beach III suffered engine trouble before it another there being fault or negligence is obliged to pay for the damage
capsized and sank. done." Act of God or force majeure, by definition, are extraordinary events
 The incident was, therefore, not completely free from human intervention. not foreseeable or avoidable, events that could not be foreseen, or which,
 The respondent also failed to demonstrate that it exercised due diligence to though foreseen, are inevitable. It is therefore not enough that the event
prevent or minimize the loss before, during and after the occurrence of the should not have been foreseen or anticipated, as is commonly believed, but
it must be one impossible to foresee or to avoid. The principle embodied in
squall.
the act of God doctrine strictly requires that the act must be occasioned
 Thus, respondent is liable for the death of Ruelito Cruz and his wife.
solely by the violence of nature. Human intervention is to be excluded from
creating or entering into the cause of the mischief. When the effect is found
to be in part the result of the participation of man, whether due to his active
NAPOCOR v. CA intervention or neglect or failure to act, the whole occurrence is then
-em- humanized and removed from the rules applicable to the acts of God. In the
case at bar, although the typhoon "Kading" was an act of God, petitioners
can not escape liability because their negligence was the proximate cause of
Facts: the loss and damage.

At the height of the typhoon “Kading”, a flash flood covered the towns near
the Angat Dam, causing deaths and destructions to residents and their
properties. Respondents blamed the tragedy to the reckless and imprudent
(2) The letter itself, addressed merely "TO ALL CONCERNED", would not
opening of the 3 floodgates by petitioner, without prior warning to the
strike one to be of serious importance, sufficient enough to set alarm and
residents within the vicinity of the dam. Petitioners denied the allegations
cause people to take precautions for their safety's sake. The notices were
and contended that they have kept the water at a safe level, that the
not delivered, or even addressed to responsible officials of the municipalities
opening of floodgates was done gradually, that it exercises diligence in the
concerned who could have disseminated the warning properly. They were
selection of its employees, and that written warnings were sent to the
delivered to ordinary employees and policemen. As it happened, the said
residents. It further contended that there was no direct causal relationship
notices do not appear to have reached the people concerned, which are the
between the damage and the alleged negligence on their part, that the
residents beside the Angat River. The plaintiffs in this case definitely did not
residents assumed the risk by living near the dam, and that what happened
receive any such warning. Indeed, the methods by which the defendants
was a fortuitous event and are of the nature of damnum absque injuria.
allegedly sent the notice or warning was so ineffectual that they cannot
claim, as they do in their second assignment of error, that the sending of
Issues: said notice has absolved them from liability.

(1) Whether the petitioner can be held liable even though the coming of the (3) We cannot give credence to petitioners' third assignment of error that
typhoon is a fortuitous event the damage caused by the opening of the dam was in the nature of
damnum absque injuria, which presupposes that although there was
(2) Whether a notice was sent to the residents physical damage, there was no legal injury in view of the fortuitous events.
There is no question that petitioners have the right, duty and obligation to
operate, maintain and preserve the facilities of Angat Dam, but their Private Respondent
negligence cannot be countenanced, however noble their intention may be.
The end does not justify the means, particularly because they could have - brought suit for the value of its vehicle and for damages against petitioner
done otherwise than simultaneously opening the spillways to such ectent. - Alleged that its vehicle was lost due to the negligence and imprudence of
Needless to say, petitioners are not entitled to counterclaim. the petitioner, citing petitioners failure to register his business with the
Department of Trade and Industry under P.D. No. 1572 and to insure it as
required in the rules implementing the Decree

Petitioner
NEGLIGENCE PER SE AND WHEN NOTNEGLIGENCE
PER SE - invoked Art. 1174 of the Civil Code and denied liability for the loss which he
alleged was due to a fortuitous event.
[G.R. No. 107968. October 30, 1996] ELIAS S. CIPRIANO and/or - In support of his argument, he cites the following provisions of the Civil
E.S. CIPRIANO ENTERPRISES, petitioner, vs. THE COURT OF Code:
APPEALS and MACLIN ELECTRONICS, INC., respondents. ART. 1174. Except in cases expressly specified by the law, or when
-zyka- it is otherwise declared by stipulation, or when the nature of the
obligation requires the assumption of risk, no person shall be
responsible for those events which could not be foreseen, or which,
FACTS: though foreseen, were inevitable.
ART. 1262. An obligation which consists in the delivery of a
PETITIONER Elias Cipriano determinate thing shall be extinguished if it should be lost or
destroyed without the fault of the debtor, and before he has
- Owner of E.S Cipriano Enterprises: engaged in the rustproofing of vehicles,
incurred in delay.
under the style Motobilkote When by law or stipulation, the obligor is liable even for fortuitous
events, the loss of the thing does not extinguish the obligation, and
Private Respondent Maclin Electronics, Inc.,
he shall be responsible for damages. The same rule applies when
- On April 30, 1991, through an employee, brought a 1990 model Kia Pride the nature of the obligation requires the assumption of risk.
Peoples car to petitioners shop for rustproofing.
- The vehicle was received in the shop under Job Order No. 123581. Neither - testified that he employed an electrician who regularly inspected the lighting
the time of acceptance nor the hour of release, however, was specified. in his restaurant and rustproofing shop. And had installed fire-fighting
devices and that the fire was an accident entirely independent of his will and
In the afternoon of May 1, 1991, fire broke out at the Lambat restaurant, which devoid of any negligence on his part
petitioner also owned, adjoining his Mobilkote rustproofing shop.
- He further averred that private respondents car was ready for release as
The fire destroyed both the shop and the restaurant, including private respondents early as afternoon of April 30, 1991, and that it was private respondents
Kia Pride. The car had been kept inside the building, allegedly to protect it from delay in claiming it that was the cause of the loss.
theft.
- explained that rustproofing involved spraying asphalt-like materials
Petitioner underneath motor vehicle so that rust will not corrode its body and that the
materials and chemicals used for this purpose are not
- claimed that despite efforts to save the vehicle, there was simply not inflammable. Therefore, he could not be made to assume the risk of loss
enough time to get it out of the building, unlike three other cars which had due to fire
been saved because they were parked near the entrance of the garage - He also claimed that he was not required to register his business with the
Department of Trade and Industry, because he was not covered by P.D. No.
On May 8 1991, private respondent sent a letter to petitioner, demanding
1572.
reimbursement for the value of the Kia Pride.

In reply, petitioner denied liability on the ground that the fire was a fortuitous event.
Private Respondent
- argued that petitioner was liable for the loss of the car even if it was caused
by a fortuitous event. - Thus, P.D. No. 1572, requires service and repair enterprises for motor
- It contended that the nature of petitioners business required him to assume vehicles, like that of petitioners to register with the Department of Trade and
the risk because under P.D. No. 1572, petitioner was required to insure his Industry. As condition for such registration or accreditation, Ministry Order
property as well as those of his customers. No. 32 requires covered enterprises to secure insurance coverage

Trial Court
- There is thus a statutory duty imposed on petitioner and it is for his failure
- court sustained the private respondents contention that the failure of to comply with this duty that he was guilty of negligence rendering him
defendant to comply with P.D. No. 1572 is in effect a manifest act of liable for damages to private respondent. While the fire in this case may be
negligence which renders defendant [petitioner herein] liable for the loss of considered a fortuitous event,[13] this circumstance cannot exempt petitioner
the car even if the same was caused by fire from liability for loss.

On appeal, the decision was affirmed

Hence, this appeal. F.F. CRUZ and CO., INC., vs. CA


-pochi-
ISSUE:
Petitioner: F.F. Cruz (furniture manufacturing shop)
[a] whether or not petitioner was required to insure his business and the vehicles
Respondents: CA; GREGORIO MABLE as substituted by his wife LUZ ALMONTE
received by him in the course of his business; if so,
MABLE and children
[b] whether or not his failure to do so constituted negligence, rendering him liable
for loss due to the risk required to be insured against. TOPIC: NEGLIGENCE PER SE

HELD: We hold that both questions must be answered in the affirmative. FACTS:
JURISPRUDENCE CITED:
The petitioner shop is adjacent to the residence of private respondents. Private
In F.F. Cruz and Co., Inc. v. Court of Appeals , we held the owner of a furniture shop respondent Gregorio Mable approached petitioner's plant manager to request that a
liable for the destruction of the plaintiffs house in a fire which started in his firewall be constructed between them but was unheeded.
establishment in view of his failure to comply with an ordinance which required the
construction of a firewall. Subsequently, a fire broke out in petitioner's shop and spread to private respondents'
house. Both were razed to the ground. The cause of the conflagration was never
In Teague v. Fernandez, we stated that where the very injury which was intended to discovered, but NBI found burned structures negative for the presence of
be prevented by the ordinance has happened, non-compliance with the ordinance inflammable substances.
was not only an act negligence, but also the proximate cause of the death.
Respondents filed an action for damages against petitioner.
SUPREME COURT
CFI: held for private respondents granting actual, moral, exemplary damages and
- Indeed, the existence of a contract between petitioner and private atty’s fees
respondent does not bar a finding of negligence under the principles of
quasi-delict, as we recently held in Fabre v. Court of Appeals.[11] Petitioner's
CA: Affirmed the decision of the trial court but reduced the award of damages
negligence is the source of his obligation. He is not being held liable for
breach of his contractual obligation due to negligence but for his negligence
in not complying with a duty imposed on him by law. It is therefore Hence, petitioner filed the instant petition for review.
immaterial that the loss occasioned to private respondent was due to a
fortuitous event, since it was petitioners negligence in not insuring against ISSUE: WON petitioner was negligent making them liable for the injury caused?
the risk which was the proximate cause of the loss. YES, res ipsa loquitur applies to the case. Also, even without applying the
doctrine of res ipsa loquitur, petitioner's failure to construct a firewall in
accordance with city ordinances would suffice to support a finding of
negligence. Violation of a statutory duty is negligence per se. FACTS: The Realistic Institute, admittedly owned and operated by defendant-
appellee Mercedes M. Teague was a vocational school for hair and beauty culture
RULING: situated on the second floor of the Gil-Armi Building. At about four o'clock in the
afternoon of October 24, 1955, a fire broke out in a store for surplus materials
located about ten meters away from the institute. Soler Street lay between that store
The doctrine of res ipsa loquitur, is as follows: and the institute. Upon seeing the fire, some of the students in the Realistic Institute
shouted 'Fire! Fire!' and thereafter, a panic ensued. Indeed, no part of the Gil-Armi
Where the thing which caused the injury complained of is shown to be under Building caught fire. But, after the panic was over, four students, including Lourdes
the management of the defendant or his servants and the accident is such as in Fernandez, a sister of plaintiffs-appellants, were found dead and several others
the ordinary course of things does not happen if those who have its injured on account of the stampede. The deceased's five brothers and sisters filed an
management or control use proper care, it affords reasonable evidence, in action for damages against Mercedes M. Teague as owner and operator of Realistic
the absence of explanation by the defendant, that the accident arose from want Institute. The Court of First Instance of Manila found for the defendant and dismissed
of care. [Africa v. Caltex (Phil.), Inc., G.R. No. L-12986, March 31, 1966, 16 SCRA the case. CA reversed.
448.]
ISSUE: W/N petitioner is liable.
IN THIS CASE
RULING: Decision affirmed.
The facts of the case likewise call for the application of the doctrine, considering that
RATIO: Petitioner was negligent and that such negligence was the proximate cause of
in the normal course of operations of a furniture manufacturing shop, combustible
the death of Lourdes Fernandez. This finding of negligence is based primarily on the
material such as wood chips, sawdust, paint, varnish and fuel and
fact that the provision of Section 491 Of the Revised Ordinances of the City of Manila
lubricants for machinery may be found thereon.
had not been complied with in connection with the construction and use of the Gil-
Armi building where the petitioner's vocational school was housed. The mere fact of
It must also be noted that negligence or want of care on the part of petitioner violation of a statute is not sufficient basis for an inference that such violation was
or its employees was not merely presumed. The Court of Appeals found that the proximate cause of the injury complained. However, if the very injury has
happened which was intended to be prevented by the statute, it has been held that
- petitioner failed to construct a firewall between its shop and the violation of the statute will be deemed to be proximate cause of the injury.
residence of private respondents as required by a city ordinance; Dispositive: The decision appealed from is affirmed, with costs.

- that the fire could have been caused by a heated motor or a lit
cigarette; JONAS AÑONUEVO vs CA and JEROME VILLAGRACIA
-ron-
- that gasoline and alcohol were used and stored in the shop; and

- that workers sometimes smoked inside the shop xxx


Facts:
Even without applying the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur, petitioner's failure to construct Petition seeks to bar recovery by an injured cyclist of damages from the driver of the
a firewall in accordance with city ordinances would suffice to support a finding of car which had struck him. The argument is hinged on the cyclist’s failure to install
negligence. The failure to comply with an ordinance providing for safety regulations safety devices on his bicycle. However, the lower courts agreed that the motorist
had been ruled by the Court as an act of negligence (Teague v. Fernandez).
himself caused the collision with his own negligence.

DISPOSITIVE: Decision of the CA is hereby AFFIRMED Both RTC and CA adjudged petitioner Añonuevo liable for the damages for the
injuries sustained by the cyclist Villagracia.

TEAGUE VS. FERNANDEZ The accident occurred on 8 February 1989, at around nine in the evening, at an
-monica- intersection in Mandaluyong:
 Villagracia was traveling on his bicycle, while Añonuevo, traversing the Ruling:
opposite lane was driving his car.
 The car was owned by Procter and Gamble Inc., the employer of Añonuevo’s 1. Añonuevo points out that Villagracia’s bicycle had no safety gadgets such as a horn
brother, Jonathan. or bell, or headlights, as invoked by a 1948 municipal ordinance. Nor was it duly
 Añonuevo was making a left turn when the collision occurred. registered with the Office of the Municipal Treasurer, as required by the same
 Villagracia sustained serious injuries as a result, which necessitated his ordinance. Finally, as admitted by Villagracia, his bicycle did not have foot brakes.
hospitalization several times in 1989, and forced him to undergo four
Añonuevo claims that Villagracia violated traffic regulations when he failed to register
operations.
his bicycle or install safety gadgets thereon. He posits that Article 2185 of the New
Villagracia instituted an action for damages against Procter and Gamble Phils., Inc. Civil Code applies by analogy. The provision reads:
and Añonuevo before the RTC. He had also filed a criminal complaint against
Article 2185. Unless there is proof to the contrary, it is presumed that a
Añonuevo before the MTC, but the latter was acquitted of the criminal charge. Trial
person driving a motor vehicle has been negligent if at the time of the
on the civil action ensued, the RTC rendered judgment against Procter and Gamble
mishap he was violating any traffic regulation.
and Añonuevo, ordering them to pay Villagracia for actual damages, moral damages,
and attorney’s fees, as well as legal costs. Both defendants appealed to the CA. CA The provision’s applicability is expressly qualified to motor vehicles only, and there is
affirmed the RTC Decision in toto. no ground to presume that the law intended a broader coverage.
CA affirmed the factual findings of the RTC. Among them: The Code Commission was cognizant of the difference in the natures and attached
responsibilities of motorized and non-motorized vehicles. Art. 2185 was not
 That it was Añonuevo’s vehicle which had struck Villagracia.
formulated to compel or ensure obeisance by all to traffic rules and regulations. The
 That Añonuevo’s vehicle had actually hit Villagracia’s left mid-thigh, thus
fact that there has long existed a higher degree of diligence and care imposed on
causing a comminuted fracture.
 That as testified by eyewitness Alfredo Sorsano, witness for Villagracia, motorized vehicles, arising from the special nature of motor vehicle, leads to the
inescapable conclusion that the qualification under Article 2185 exists precisely to
Añonuevo was "umaarangkada," or speeding as he made the left turn into
recognize such higher standard. Simply put, the standards applicable to motor vehicle
Libertad.
 That considering Añonuevo’s claim that a passenger jeepney was obstructing are not on equal footing with other types of vehicles.
his path as he made the turn, Añonuevo had enough warning to control his Thus, we cannot sustain the contention that Art. 2185 should apply to non-motorized
speed. vehicles, even if by analogy.
 And that Añonuevo failed to exercise the ordinary precaution, care and
diligence required of him in order that the accident could have been 2. Even if the legal presumption under Article 2185 should not apply to Villagracia,
avoided. this should not preclude any possible finding of negligence on his part.

Notably, Añonuevo, in his current petition, does not dispute the findings of tortious The Civil Code characterizes negligence as the omission of that diligence which is
conduct on his part made by the lower courts, hinging his appeal instead on the required by the nature of the obligation and corresponds with the circumstances of
alleged negligence of Villagracia. Añonuevo proffers no exculpatory version of facts the persons, of the time and of the place. However, the existence of negligence in a
on his part, nor does he dispute the conclusions made by the RTC and the Court of given case is not determined by the personal judgment of the actor in a given
Appeals. situation, but rather, it is the law which determines what would be reckless or
negligent.
Issues:
Añonuevo, asserts that Villagracia was negligent as the latter had transgressed a
1. Whether or not Article 2185 of the New Civil Code, which presumes the
municipal ordinance requiring the registration of bicycles and the installation of safety
driver of a motor vehicle negligent if he was violating a traffic regulation at
devices thereon. This view finds some support if anchored on the long standing
the time of the mishap, should apply by analogy to non-motorized vehicles.
principle of negligence per se.
(no)
2. Whether or not Villagracia’s own fault and negligence (for transgressing a The generally accepted view is that the violation of a statutory duty constitutes
municipal ordinance requiring the registration of bicycles and the installation negligence, negligence as a matter of law, or negligence per se.
of safety devices) serves to absolve the Añonuevo of any liability for
damages. (no)
In Teague vs. Fernandez, the Court cited with approval American authorities place of work at the mine camp at Talantunan, while trying to overtake another
elucidating on the rule: truck on the company road, it turned over and hit a coconut tree, resulting in the
death of said Mamador and injury to the others.
"The mere fact of violation of a statute is not sufficient basis for an inference * Procopio Macunat- prosecuted, convicted and sentenced to indemnify the heirs
that such violation was the proximate cause of the injury complained. of the deceased.
However, if the very injury has happened which was intended to be
prevented by the statute, it has been held that violation of the statute will ISSUE: Whether the act boarding the truck, which violates the employer’s
be deemed to be the proximate cause of the injury." prohibition, constitutes negligence per se.

It cannot be denied that the statutory purpose for requiring bicycles to be equipped NO.
with headlights or horns is to promote road safety and to minimize the occurrence of * The most important aspect of this appeal is the effect of the deceased's having
road accidents involving bicycles. At face value, Villagracia’s mishap was precisely the violated the employer's prohibition against laborers riding the haulage trucks.
danger sought to be guarded against by the ordinance he violated. Petitioner claims such violation was the laborer's "notorious negligence"which, under
the law, precludes recovery. The Commission has not declared that the prohibition
But this is by no means a simple case. Añonuevo was speeding as he made the left was known to Mamador.
turn, and such negligent act was the proximate cause of the accident. This reckless * Supposing Mamador knew the prohibition, can we truthfully say that he boarded
behavior would have imperiled anyone unlucky enough within the path of Añonuevo’s the fatal truck with full apprehension of the existence of the danger that an ordinary
car as it turned into the intersection. We are hard put to conclude that Villagracia prudent man would try to avoid? I do not believe so, and even in the presence of
would have avoided injury had his bicycle been up to par with safety regulations, doubt, the same must be resolved in his favor. Unless of course, we can attribute to
him a desire to end his life. Nowhere in the records of this case can we find the
especially considering that Añonuevo was already speeding as he made the turn, or
slightest insinuation of that desire.
before he had seen Villagracia. Even assuming that Añonuevo had failed to see
* There is no doubt that mere riding on a haulage truck or stealing a ride thereon is
Villagracia because the bicycle was not equipped with headlights, such lapse on the not negligence, ordinarily. It couldn't be, because transportation by truck is not
cyclist’s part would not have acquitted the driver of his duty to slow down as he dangerous per se. It is argued that there was notorious negligence in this particular
proceeded to make the left turn. instance because there was the employer's prohibition. Does violation of this order
constitute negligence? Many courts hold that violation of a statute or ordinance
The failures imputed on Villagracia are not grievous enough so as to negate monetary constitutes negligence per se.
relief. The failure of the bicycle owner to comply with accepted safety practices, * However, there is practical unanimity in the proposition that violation of a rule
whether or not imposed by ordinance or statute, is not sufficient to negate or promulgated by a Commission or board is not negligence per se; but it may be
mitigate recovery unless a causal connection is established between such failure and evidence of negligence.
the injury sustained. * This prohibition of the employer couldn't be of a greater obligation than the rule
of a Commission or board. And the referee of the Commission correctly considered
By Añonuevo’s own admission, he had seen Villagracia at a good distance of ten (10) this violation as possible evidence of negligence; but it declared that under the
meters. Had he been decelerating, as he should, as he made the turn, Añonuevo circumstances, the laborer could not be declared to have acted with negligence since
would have had ample opportunity to avoid hitting Villagracia. Moreover, the fact that the prohibition had nothing to do with personal safety of the riders.
Añonuevo had sighted Villagracia before the accident would negate any possibility * Nevertheless, even granting there was negligence, it surely was not notorious
that the absence of lights on the bike contributed to the cause of the accident. negligence, which we have interpreted to mean the same thing as gross
Petition DENIED. negligence—implying "conscious indifference to consequences" "pursuing a course
of conduct which would naturally and probably result in injury" "utter disregard of
MARINDUQUE IRON MINES AGENTS, INC., PETITIONER, VS. THE consequences. Getting or accepting a free ride on the company's haulage truck
WORKMEN'S COMPENSATION COMMISSION, THE HEIRS OF PEDRO couldn't be gross negligence, because as the referee found, "no danger or risk was
MAMADOR AND GERONIMO MA. COLL apparent."
-gaddi-

FACTS: SANITARY STEAM LAUNDRY, INC.,


vs.
* Deceased Mamador together with other laborers of Marinduque Iron Mines THE COURT OF APPEALS
Agents Inc. boarded a truck belonging to the latter, which was then driven by one -joy-
Procopio Macunat, also employed by the corporation, and on its way to their
FACTS: IN THIS CASE: Petitioner says that "driving an overloaded vehicle with only one
functioning headlight during nighttime certainly increases the risk of accident," that
This case involves a collision between a Mercedes Bent panel truck of petitioner because the Cimarron had only one headlight, there was "decreased visibility," and
Sanitary Steam Laundry and a Cimarron which caused the death of three persons and that the tact that the vehicle was overloaded and its front seat overcrowded
"decreased [its] maneuverability," However, mere allegations such as these are not
the injuries of several others. The accident took place at the Aguinaldo Highway in
sufficient to discharge its burden of proving clearly that such alleged negligence was
Imus, Cavite on August 31, 1980. All the victims were riding in the Cimarron. One of
the contributing cause of the injury. The testimonies show that the driver of the panel
those who died was the driver. The Regional Trial Court of Makati found petitioner's truck lost control of his vehicle and bumped the Cimarron.
driver to be responsible for the vehicular accident and accordingly held petitioner
liable to private respondents.
All these point to the fact that the proximate cause of the accident was the
The Cimarron, with Plate No. 840-45, was owned by Salvador Salenga, father of one negligence of petitioner's driver. As the trial court noted, the swerving of petitioner's
of the employees of PMCI. Driving the vehicle was Rolando Hernandez. It appears panel truck to the opposite lane could mean not only that petitioner's driver was
running the vehicle at a very high speed but that he was tailgating the passenger
that at about 8:00 p.m., as it was traveling along Aguinaldo Highway in Imus, Cavite
jeepney ahead of it as well.
on its way back to Manila, the Cimarron was hit on its front portion by petitioner's
panel truck, bearing Plate No. 581 XM, which was traveling in the opposite direction.
CONCEPTOF PROXIMATE CAUSE
Petitioner contends that the driver of the Cimarron was guilty of contributory
negligence and, therefore, its liability should be mitigated, if not totally extinguished. BATACLAN VS. MEDINA
It claims that the driver of the Cimarron was guilty or violation of traffic rules and
-jeanelle-
regulations at the time of the mishap. Hence, in accordance with Art. 2185 of the Civil
Code, he was presumed to be negligent. Facts:
-overloaded  Medina Transportation was operated by its owner defendant Mariano Medina
under a Certificate of Public Convenience. Driver was Conrado Saylon
-4 adults (including the driver accupied the front seats)
 18 passengers, the driver and the conductor were on board the bus wherein
- only one headlight Juan Bataclan was one of the passengers.
 One of the front tires of the bus burst and the vehicle began to zigzag until
it fell into a canal and turned turtle
because of his negligence (i.e., the aforementioned violations of traffic rules and
 Some passengers managed to get out of the bus but 4 including Bataclan
regulations such as the use of only one headlight at night and the overcrowding at
the front seat of the vehicle), he was not able to avoid a collision with the panel could not get out of the bus.
truck.  After half an hour, ten men came carrying a lighted torch made of bamboo
approached the overturned bus, then a fierce fire started burning the bus
including the passengers inside the bus and resulted to the death of the
ISSUE: won the alleged aforementioned violation of traffic rules negligence per se
passengers trapped including Juan Bataclan.
 Petitioner, the widow of Juan Bataclan brought an action against Mariano
HELD: nawp Medina.

Petitioner has the burden of showing a causal connection between the injury received Issue:
and the violation of the Land Transportation and Traffic Code. He must show that the
violation of the statute was the proximate or legal cause of the injury or that it WON the proximate cause of the death of Bataclan was the overturning of the bus.
substantially contributed thereto.
Held:

RATIO: Negligence, consisting in whole or in part, of violation of law, like any other  Yes.
negligence, is without legal consequence unless it is a contributing cause of the  PROXIMATE CAUSE
injury.
- That cause, which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any
efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which the result
would not have occurred. Dra. dela Llana. Apart from these minor wounds, Dra. dela Llana did not appear to
have suffered from any other visible physical injuries. In the first week of May 2000,
- The proximate legal cause is that acting first and producing the injury, Dra. dela Llana began to feel mild to moderate pain on the left side of her neck and
either immediately or by setting other events in motion, all constituting a shoulder. The pain became more intense as days passed by. Her injury became more
natural and continuous chain of events, each having a close causal severe. Her health deteriorated to the extent that she could no longer move her left
connection with its immediate predecessor, the final event in the chain arm. Dra. Dela Llana needed to undergo operation of her spine and neck due to
immediately effecting the injury as a natural and probable result of the severe pain. The operation released the impingement of the nerve, but incapacitated
cause which first acted, under such circumstances that the person Dra. dela Llana from the practice of her profession since June 2000 despite the
responsible for the first event should, as an ordinary prudent and intelligent surgery.
person, have reasonable ground to expect at the moment of his act or
default that an injury to some person might probably result therefrom. Dra. dela Llana demanded from Rebecca compensation for her injuries, but
Rebecca refused to pay. Dra. dela Llana sued Rebecca for damages before the
Regional Trial Court of Quezon City (RTC). She alleged that she lost the mobility of
 The proximate cause in this case is the overturning of the bus.
her arm as a result of the vehicular accident. In defense, Rebecca maintained that
 The vehicle turned not only on its side but completely on its back, the
Dra. dela Llana had no cause of action against her as no reasonable relation existed
leaking of the gasoline from the tank was not unnatural or unexpected.
 That the coming of the men with lighted torch was in response to the call for between the vehicular accident and Dra. dela Llana’s injury. She pointed out that Dra.
dela Llana’s illness became manifest one month and one week from the date of the
help, made not only by the passengers, but most probably, by the driver and
vehicular accident. As a counterclaim, she demanded the payment of attorney’s fees
the conductor themselves, and that because it was dark (2:30AM), the
and costs of the suit.
rescuers had to carry a light with them, and coming as they did from a rural
area where lanterns and flashlights were not available. Rebecca testified that Dra. dela Llana was physically fit and strong when
 The coming of the men was to be expected and was a natural sequence of they met several days after the vehicular accident. She also asserted that she
the overturning of the bus, the trapping of some of its passengers and the observed the diligence of a good father of a family in the selection and supervision of
call for outside help. Joel. She pointed out that she required Joel to submit a certification of good moral
 The burning of the bus can also in part be attributed to the negligence of
character as well as barangay, police, and NBI clearances prior to his employment.
the carrier, through its driver and its conductor.
She also stressed that she only hired Primero after he successfully passed the driving
 According to the witness, the driver and the conductor were on the road
skills test conducted by Alberto Marcelo, a licensed driver-mechanic.
walking back and forth. The driver should and must have known that in the
position in which the overturned bus was, gasoline could and must have RTC: The RTC ruled in favor of Dra. dela Llana and held that the proximate cause of
leaked from the gasoline tank and soaked in the area in and around the bus. Dra. dela Llana’swhiplash injury to be Joel’s reckless driving.
 The fact that gasoline was spilled, specially over a large area, can be smelt
and directed even from a distance, and yet neither the driver nor the CA: the CA reversed the RTC ruling. It held that Dra. dela Llana failed to establish a
conductor would appear to have cautioned or taken steps to warn the reasonable connection between the vehicular accident and her whiplash injury by
rescuers not to bring the lighted torch too near the bus. preponderance of evidence.

De La Llana vs Biong
Issue:
-em-
Whether Joel’s reckless driving is the proximate cause of Dra. dela Llana’s whiplash
FACTS:
injury.
On March 30, 2000, at around 11:00 p.m., Juan dela Llana was driving a
1997 Toyota Corolla car alongNorth Avenue, Quezon City. His sister, Dra. dela Llana,
was seated at the front passenger seat while a certain Calimlim was at the backseat. Held:
Juan stopped the car across the Veterans Memorial Hospital when the signal light
turned red. A few seconds after the car halted, a dump truck suddenly rammed the No. Dra. dela Llana failed to establish her case by preponderance of
car’s rear end, violently pushing the car forward. Due to the impact, the car’s rear evidence.
end collapsed and its rear windshield was shattered. Glass splinters flew, puncturing
Article 2176 of the Civil Code provides that "[w]hoever by act or omission In the present case, the burden of proving the proximate causation between
causes damage to another, there being fault or negligence, is obliged to pay for the Joel’s negligence and Dra. dela Llana’s whiplash injury rests on Dra. dela Llana. She
damage done. Such fault or negligence, if there is no pre-existing contractual relation must establish by preponderance of evidence that Joel’s negligence, in its natural and
between the parties, is a quasi-delict." Under this provision, the elements necessary continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produced her
to establish a quasi-delict case are: whiplash injury, and without which her whiplash injury would not have occurred.

(1) damages to the plaintiff; Notably, Dra. dela Llana anchors her claim mainly on three pieces of
evidence:
(2) negligence, by act or omission, of the defendant or by some person for
whose acts the defendant must respond, was guilty; and (1) the pictures of her damaged car,

(3) the connection of cause and effect between such negligence and the (2) the medical certificate dated November 20, 2000, and
damages.28
(3) her testimonial evidence. However, none of these pieces of evidence
These elements show that the source of obligation in a quasi-delict case is show the causal relation between the vehicular accident and the whiplash injury. In
the breach or omission of mutual duties that civilized society imposes upon its other words,
members, or which arise from non-contractual relations of certain members of society
to others.29 Dra. dela Llana, during trial, did not adduce the factum probans or the
evidentiary facts by which the factum probandum or the ultimate fact can be
Based on these requisites, Dra. dela Llana must first establish by established.
preponderance of evidence the three elements of quasi-delict before we determine
Rebecca’s liability as Joel’s employer. She should show the chain of causation Indeed, a perusal of the pieces of evidence presented by the parties before
between Joel’s reckless driving and her whiplash injury. the trial court shows that Dra. Dela Llana did not present any testimonial or
documentary evidence that directly shows the causal relation between the vehicular
Only after she has laid this foundation can the presumption - that Rebecca accident and Dra. Dela Llana’s injury.Her claim that Joel’s negligence causes her
did not exercise the diligence of a good father of a family in the selection and whiplash injury was not established because of the deficiency of the presented
supervision of Joel - arise. evidence during trial. We point out in this respect that courts cannot take judicial
notice that vehicular accidents cause whiplash injuries. This proportion is not public
Once negligence, the damages and the proximate causation are established, knowledge, or is capable of unquestionable demonstration, or ought to be known to
this Court can then proceed with the application and the interpretation of the fifth judges because of their judicial functions. We have no expertise in the field of
paragraph of Article 2180 of the Civil Code. medicine. Justices and judges are only tasked to apply and interpret the law on the
Under Article 2176 of the Civil Code, in relation with the fifth paragraph of basis of the parties’ pieces of evidence and their corresponding legal arguments.In
Article 2180, "an action predicated on an employee’s act or omission may be sum, Dra. dela Llana miserably failed to establish her cause by preponderance of
instituted against the employer who is held liable for the negligent act or omission evidence. While we commiserate with her, our solemn duty to independently and
committed by his employee." impartially assess the merits of the case binds us to rule against Dra. dela Llana’s
favor. Her claim, unsupported by prepondernace of evidence, is merely a bare
assertion and has no leg to stand on.

The rationale for these graduated levels of analyses is that it is essentially


the wrongful or negligent act or omission itself which creates the vinculum juris in
extra-contractual obligations. SOUTHEASTERN COLLEGE, INC., petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS,
JUANITA DE JESUS VDA. DE DIMAANO, EMERITA DIMAANO,
In civil cases, a party who alleges a fact has the burden of proving it. REMEDIOS DIMAANO, CONSOLACION DIMAANO and
MILAGROS DIMAANO, respondents.
He who alleges has the burden of proving his allegation by preponderance of
-zyka-
evidence or greater weight of credible evidence.

The reason for this rule is that bare allegations, unsubstantiated by


FACTS:
evidence, are not equivalent to proof. In short, mere allegations are not evidence.
PRIVATE RESPONDENT - owners of a house at 326 College Road, Pasay City HENCE, THIS PETITION.

PETIITIONER - owns a four-storey school building along the same College Road ISSUE:

On October 11, 1989, at about 6:30 in the morning, a powerful typhoon Saling hit [A] Whether or not the damage on the roof of the building of private respondents
Metro Manila. Buffeted by very strong winds, the roof of petitioners building was resulting from the impact of the falling portions of the school buildings roof ripped off
partly ripped off and blown away, landing on and destroying portions of the roofing of by the strong winds of typhoon Saling, was, within legal contemplation, due to
private respondent’s house. fortuitous event; if so,

After the typhoon had passed, an ocular inspection of the destroyed buildings was [B] WON petitioner can be held liable for the damages suffered by the private
conducted by a team of engineers headed by the city building official, Engr. Jesus L. respondents
Reyna.
HELD:
Engr. Jesus L. Reyna.
[A] APPLICABLE PROVISION (NCC):
- It then recommended that to avoid any further loss and damage to lives,
limbs and property of persons living in the vicinity, the fourth floor of subject Art 1174. Except in cases expressly specified by the law, or when it is otherwise
school building be declared as a structural hazard. declared by stipulation, or when the nature of the obligation requires the assumption
of risk, no person shall be responsible for those events which could not be foreseen,
or which, though foreseen, were inevitable.
PRIVATE RESPONDENT

- In their Complaint before the Regional Trial Court of Pasay City, Branch 117, The antecedent of fortuitous event or caso fortuito is found in
for damages based on culpa aquiliana, alleged that the damage to their the Partidas which defines it as an event which takes place by accident and could not
house rendered the same uninhabitable, forcing them to stay temporarily in have been foreseen. Escriche elaborates it as an unexpected event or act of God
others houses. which could neither be foreseen nor resisted. Civilist Arturo M. Tolentino adds that
- Sought to recover from petitioner payment for damages [f]ortuitous events may be produced by two general causes: (1) by nature, such as
earthquakes, storms, floods, epidemics, fires, etc. and (2) by the act of man, such as
PETITIONER an armed invasion, attack by bandits, governmental prohibitions, robbery, etc.

- In its Answer, averred that subject school building had withstood several In order that a fortuitous event may exempt a person from liability, it is
necessary that he be free from any previous negligence or misconduct by reason of
devastating typhoons and other calamities in the past, without its roofing or
which the loss may have been occasioned. An act of God cannot be invoked for the
any portion thereof giving way protection of a person who has been guilty of gross negligence in not trying to
- that it has not been remiss in its responsibility to see to it that said school forestall its possible adverse consequences.
building, which houses school children, faculty members, and employees, is
in tip-top condition When a person’s negligence concurs with an act of God in producing damage or
- and furthermore, typhoon Saling was an act of God and therefore beyond injury to another, such person is not exempt from liability by showing that the
human control such that petitioner cannot be answerable for the damages immediate or proximate causeof the damage or injury was a fortuitous event.
wrought thereby, absent any negligence on its part. When the effect is found to be partly the result of the participation of man
whether it be from active intervention, or neglect, or failure to act the whole
TRIAL COURT
occurrence is hereby humanized, and removed from the rules applicable to acts of
- giving credence to the ocular inspection report, found that, while typhoon God.
Saling was accompanied by strong winds, the damage to private
respondents house could have been avoided if the construction of the roof SUPREME COURT
of [petitioners] building was not faulty
In the case under consideration, the lower court accorded full credence to the
PETITIONER APPEALED TO THE CA – affirmed with modification trial finding of the investigating team that subject school buildings roofing had no
court’s decision sufficient anchorage to hold it in position especially when battered by strong
winds. Based on such finding, the trial court imputed negligence to petitioner and admitted that it was a legal requirement before the construction of any building to
adjudged it liable for damages to private respondents. obtain a permit from the city building official

This Court believes otherwise, notwithstanding the general rule that factual In like manner, after construction of the building, a certification must be secured from
findings by the trial court, especially when affirmed by the appellate court, are the same official attesting to the readiness for occupancy of the edifice. Having
binding and conclusive upon this Court. We find exception to this rule and hold that obtained both building permit and certificate of occupancy, these are, at the very
the lower courts misappreciated the evidence proffered. least, prima facie evidence of the regular and proper construction of subject school
building
DISCUSSION
In light of the foregoing, we find no clear and convincing evidence to
- There is no question that a typhoon or storm is a fortuitous event, a natural sustain the judgment of the appellate court. We thus hold that petitioner
occurrence which may be foreseen but is unavoidable despite any amount of has not been shown negligent or at fault regarding the construction and
foresight, diligence or care. In order to be exempt from liability arising from maintenance of its school building in question and that typhoon Saling was
any adverse consequence engendered thereby, there should have been no the proximate cause of the damage suffered by private respondent’s house.
human participation amounting to a negligent act.

- In other words, the person seeking exoneration from liability must not be DISTINGUISHED FROM REMOTE CAUSE
guilty of negligence. Negligence, as commonly understood, is conduct which
naturally or reasonably creates undue risk or harm to others. It may be the
DY TEBAN TRADING, INC., vs. Ching
failure to observe that degree of care, precaution, and vigilance which the
circumstances justly demand, or the omission to do something which a -pochi-
prudent and reasonable man, guided by considerations which ordinarily
regulate the conduct of human affairs, would do. Petitioner: Owner of the Nissan van
Respondent: Jose Ching and/or Liberty forest (owner of the prime mover); Cresilito
[B] From these premises, we proceed to determine whether petitioner was Limbaga (driver of the prime mover)
negligent, such that if it were not, the damage caused to private
respondent’s house could have been avoided
TOPIC: Proximate Cause Distinguished from Remote Cause
- At the outset, it bears emphasizing that a person claiming damages for the
negligence of another has the burden of proving the existence of fault or FACTS:
negligence causative of his injury or loss. The facts constitutive of
negligence must be affirmatively established by competent evidence, not
Rogelio Ortiz was driving a Nissan van owned by petitioner Dy Teban Trading, Inc.
merely by presumptions and conclusions without basis in fact.
while a Joana Paula passenger bus was cruising on the opposite lane towards the
- Private respondents, in establishing the culpability of petitioner, merely van. In between the two vehicles was a parked prime mover with a trailer, owned by
relied on the aforementioned report submitted by a team which made an private respondent Liberty Forest, Inc.
ocular inspection of petitioners school building after the typhoon. As the
term imparts, an ocular inspection is one by means of actual sight or The night before, the prime mover suffered a tire blowout, thus they parked the
viewing. What is visual to the eye though, is not always reflective of the real prime mover askew occupying a substantial portion of the national highway, on the
cause behind. lane of the passenger bus.
In the present case, other than the said ocular inspection, no investigation was
conducted to determine the real cause of the partial unroofing of petitioners school The prime mover was not equipped with triangular, collapsible reflectorized plates,
building. Private respondents did not even show that the plans, specifications and the early warning device required under Letter of Instruction No. 229. As substitute,
design of said school building were deficient and defective. Neither did they prove Limbaga placed a banana trunk with leaves on the front and the rear portion of the
any substantial deviation from the approved plans and specifications. Nor did they prime mover to warn incoming motorists. It is alleged that Limbaga likewise placed
conclusively establish that the construction of such building was basically flawed kerosene lighted tin cans on the front and rear of the trailer.

On the other hand, petitioner elicited from one of the witnesses of private To avoid hitting the parked prime mover occupying its lane, the incoming passenger
respondents, city building official Jesus Reyna, that the original plans and design of bus swerved to the right, onto the lane of the approaching Nissan van. When Ortiz
petitioners school building were approved prior to its construction. Engr. Reyna saw the approaching passenger bus. He pumped his break slowly, swerved to the left
to avoid the oncoming bus but the van hit the front of the stationary prime mover. - Limbaga was utterly negligent in parking the prime mover askew, occupying
The passenger bus hit the rear of the prime mover. a substantial portion on the lane of the passenger bus. It is common sense
that the skewed parking posed a serious risk to oncoming motorists.
Ortiz only suffered minor injuries. The Nissan van, however, became inoperable as a
result of the incident. - Limbaga also failed to take proper steps to minimize the risk posed by (1)
not immediately inform his employer that the prime mover suffered two tire
Petitioner Nissan van owner filed a complaint for damages against private blowouts, (2) simply place banana leaves on the front and rear of the prime
respondents mover to serve as warning hence NO WARLY WARNING DEVICE and (3)
slept on the prime mover instead of standing guard beside the vehicle
RTC rendered a decision in favor of petitioner Dy Teban Trading, Inc.: that
the proximate cause of collision was improper parking of the prime mover and the - Liberty Forest, Inc. also failed to keep the prime mover in proper condition
absence of an early warning device on the vehicle as it had worn out tires, and only equipped with one spare tire.

Private respondents appealed to the CA. (2) The skewed parking of the prime mover was the proximate cause of
the collision.
CA: reversed RTC: that the proximate cause of the vehicular collision was the
failure of the Nissan van to give way or yield to the right of way of the passenger What is proximate cause?
bus, thus: Proximate cause is defined as that cause, which, in natural and continuous sequence,
unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which
the result would not have occurred.
Hence this appeal.
More comprehensively, proximate cause is that cause acting first and producing the
Issues: injury, either immediately or by setting other events in motion, all constituting a
(a) whether or not prime mover driver Limbaga was negligent in parking the natural and continuous chain of events, each having a close causal connection with
vehicle? YES its immediate predecessor, the final event in the chain immediately effecting the
injury as natural and probable result of the cause which first acted, under such
(b) whether or not Limabaga’s negligence (skewed parking) was the proximate circumstances that the person responsible for the first event should, as an ordinarily
cause of the damage to the Nissan van? YES prudent and intelligent person, have reasonable ground to expect at the moment of
his act or default that an injury to some person might probably result therefrom.
Ruling:
How to establish proximate cause?
There is no exact mathematical formula.
(1) Limbaga was negligent in parking the prime mover on the national - Plaintiff must establish a sufficient link between the act or omission and the
highway; he failed to prevent or minimize the risk to oncoming damage or injury.
motorists. - That link must not be remote or far-fetched; otherwise, no liability will
attach.
Negligence is defined as the failure to observe for the protection of the interests of - The damage or injury must be a natural and probable result of the act or
another person that degree of care, precaution, and vigilance which the omission.
circumstances justly demand, whereby such other person suffers injury.
IN THIS CASE
The test of negligence (Picart v. Smith) is: Did the defendant in doing the alleged
negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinary person would The damage caused to the Nissan van was a natural and probable result of the
have used in the same situation? If not, then he is guilty of negligence. improper parking of the prime mover with trailer. As discussed, the skewed parking of
the prime mover posed a serious risk to oncoming motorists. Limbaga failed to
IN THIS CASE prevent or minimize that risk. The skewed parking of the prime mover
triggered the series of events that led to the collision, particularly the
swerving of the passenger bus and the Nissan van.
Private respondents Liberty Forest, Inc. and Limbaga are liable for all damages that Issue:
resulted from the skewed parking of the prime mover. Their liability includes those Are the counsels for the parties committed acts which require the exercise of the
damages resulting from precautionary measures taken by other motorist in trying to court's disciplinary powers?
avoid collision with the parked prime mover.
Held:
As We see it, the passenger bus swerved to the right, onto the lane of the Nissan YES. The records show that the law firm of Del Rosario and Del Rosario thru its
van, to avoid colliding with the improperly parked prime mover. The driver of the associate, Atty Tria, is the counsel of record for FESC in both GR no 130068 and GR
Nissan van, Ortiz, reacted swiftly by swerving to the left, onto the lane of the no 130150. GR 130068 which is assigned to the Court's second division, commenced
passenger bus, hitting the parked prime mover. Ortiz obviously would not have with the filing of a verified motion for extension of time which contained a
swerved if not for the passenger bus abruptly occupying his van’s lane. The certification against forum shopping signed by counsel Tria stating that to the best of
passenger bus, in turn, would not have swerved to the lane of the Nissan his knowledge there is no action or proceeding pending in the SC, CA or any other
van if not for the prime mover improperly parked on its lane. The skewed tribunal.
parking is the proximate cause of the damage to the Nissan van. Reviewing the records, the court finds that the petition filed by MPA in GR no, 130150
then pending with the third division was duly filed with a copy thereof furnished by
registered mail to counsel for FESC (atty Tria). It would be fair to conclude that when
DISPOSITIVE:
FESC filed its petition GR no 130068, it would aready have received a copy of the
copy of the petition by MPA. It wa therefore encumbent upon FESC to inform the
WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED. The Court of Appeals decision dated court of the pending action. But considering that it was a superfluity at that stage of
August 28, 2003 is hereby SET ASIDE. The RTC decision dated August 7, 2001 is the proceeding , it being unnecessary to file such certification of non forum shopping
REINSTATED IN FULL. with a mere motion for extension, the court disregarded such error.
On the other hand it took the OSG, representing PPA, an ordinately and unreasonably
long period of time to file its comment, thus unduly delaying the resolution of these
cases. In GR no 130068, it took 210 days before the OSG filed its comment. FESC
was not even furnished with a copy. In Gr no 130150 it took 180 days before
comment was filed. This disinclination of the OSG to seasonably file required
pleadings constitutes deplorable disservice to the public and can only be categorized
as inefficiency on the part of the govt law office.
CONCURRENT CAUSES Counsel for FESC, the law firm of Del Rosario and Del Rosario, specifically its
asscociate Tria is reprimaded and warned that a repetition of the same acts shall be
FAR EASTERN SHIPPING COMPANY vs. COURT OF APPEALS dealt with severely.
-monica- The original members of the legal tean of the OSG are admonished and warned tha a
repetition shall also be dealt with more stringently.
Facts:
M/V Pavlodar owned and operated by the Far Eastern Shipping Company (FESC) Dispositive: The decision of the CA is affirmed. Gavino, MPA and FESC are declared
arrived at the port of Manila. Senen Gavino was assigned by the Manila Pilot's solidarily liable with MPA entitled to reimbursement from Gavino for such amount of
Association (MPA) to conduct docking manuevers for the safe berthing of the vessel. the adjudged pecuniary liability in excess of the amount equivalent to 75% of its
Gavino stationed himself in the bridge, with the master of the vessel, Victor prescribed reserved fund.
Kavankov, beside him.
When the vessel was already about 2000 feet from the pier, Gavino ordered the
anchor dropped. Kavankov relayed the orders to the crew of the vessel. However the Tamayo vs Señora
anchor did not hold as expected. The speed of the vessel did not slacken. -ron-
A commotion ensued between the crew members. When Gavino inquired about the
commotion, Kavankov assured Gavino that there was nothing to it. Facts:
The bow of the vessel rammed into the apron of the pier causing considerable
damage to the pier. PPA filed a complaint for a sum of money against FESC, Gavino The factual antecedents, as found by the RTC and affirmed by the CA, are as follows:
and MPA. CA ruled in favor of PPA holding them liable with MPA (employer of
Kavankov) entitled to reimbursement from Gavino.
 Antonieto M. Señora, a police chief inspector of the PNP, was riding a The petition has no merit and is hereby denied.
motorcycle and crossing an intersection when a tricycle allegedly bumped his
motorcycle from behind. The issues raised by petitioners are questions of fact. The Court will not disturb
 As a result, the motorcycle was pushed into the path of a delivery van, factual findings of the lower courts unless there are compelling or exceptional
which was cruising along Sucat Road. reasons. No such reasons exist in this case.
 The delivery van ran over Señora, while his motorcycle was thrown a few
The Court holds that the RTC and the CA correctly found Polloso negligent.
meters away.
 He was recovered underneath the delivery van and rushed to the Medical If, as Pascual testified, the truck stopped when the tricycle bumped the motorcycle
Center of Parañaque, where he was pronounced dead on arrival. from behind, then there would have been no accident. Even if the motorcycle was
nudged into the path of the truck, as she claimed, there would have been no impact
The tricycle was driven by Leovino F. Amparo, who testified that it was the delivery
if the truck itself was not moving, and certainly not an impact that would pin the
van that bumped Señora’s motorcycle. He also said that when he was brought to the
motorcycle’s driver under the truck and throw the motorcycle a few meters away.
police station for investigation, he brought his tricycle to disprove the claim of the
delivery van driver by showing that his tricycle sustained no damage. The Court likewise finds that the CA did not err in upholding Tamayo’s solidary
liability for Señora’s death. The RTC correctly disregarded the testimonies of
The delivery van, on the other hand, was driven by Elmer O. Polloso and registered in
Tamayo’s wife and his employee, leaving no other evidence to support the claim that
the name of Cirilo Tamayo. While trial was ongoing, Tamayo was suffering from lung
he had exercised the degree of diligence required in hiring and supervising his
cancer and was bedridden. His wife, petitioner Constancia, testified on his behalf.
employees.
Constancia narrated that she and her husband were managing a single proprietorship
known as Tamayo and Sons Ice Dealer. She testified that it was Tamayo who hired CA’s decision is AFFIRMED.
their drivers. She claimed that, as employer, her husband exercised the due diligence
of a good father of a family in the selection, hiring, and supervision of his employees,
including driver Polloso. Tamayo would tell their drivers not to drive fast and not to
be too strict with customers.

One of Tamayo’s employees, Nora Pascual, testified. She narrated that, while they
were traversing Sucat Road, she saw a motorcycle going towards Filipinas Avenue.
Pascual said that, when they reached the intersection of Sucat Road and Filipinas PROSPERO SABIDO AND ASER LAGUNDA VS. CARLOS CUSTODIO
Avenue, Polloso blew the horn. She then saw a tricycle bump the rear of the -gaddi-
motorcycle. She said that Polloso stopped the delivery van. When they alighted, they
FACTS:
saw the motorcycle already under the delivery van. Pascual further testified that
Polloso was a careful driver who drove the truck slowly and followed traffic rules. She
* In Lumban, Laguna, two trucks, one driven by Nicasio Mudales and belonging to
also said that Tamayo called for a meeting before the delivery trucks left and told his Laguna Tayabas Bus Company, sliding downward a slope; and the other driven by
drivers to be careful in their driving and to be courteous to their customers. Aser Lagunda and owned by Prospero Sabido, climbing up with no cargoes or
passengers on board, going in opposite directions met each other in a road curve.
RTC found defendants Amparo (tricycle driver), Polloso (delivery van driver) and
* Agripino Custodio- passenger of LTB bus, who was hanging on the left side of
Tamayo (employer of Polloso) liable jointly and severally to plaintiffs for actual
the bus, full of passengers, was sideswiped by the truck driven by Aser
damages, loss of life, loss of earnings and for attorney’s fees. CA affirmed the RTC’s Lagunda. As a result, he was injured and died.
decision, but modified the amount of loss of earning capacity from ₱1,152,360.00 to * Belen Makabuhay- Custodio's widow, testified that the 6 x 6 truck was running
₱1,887,847.00. fast when it met the LTB Bus. And Aser Lagunda had time and opportunity
to avoid the mishap if he had been sufficiently careful and cautious because
Issue: the two trucks never collided with each other.
* CFI & CA- concluded that the Laguna-Tayabas Bus Co and its driver Nicasio
1. Whether or not Polloso was guilty of negligence in driving the delivery van.
Mudales had violated the contract of carriage with Agripino Custodio,
2. Whether or not Tamayo exercised the degree of diligence required in hiring
whereas petitioners Sabido and Lagunda were guilty of a quasi delict, by
and supervising his employees.
reason of which all of them were held solidarily liable in the manner above
Ruling: indicated.
- The fact of allowing Agripino Custodio to hang on the side of the truck,
makes the defendant Laguna Tayabas Bus Company liable for damages.
- Aser Lagunda had time and opportunity to avoid the mishap if he had been
sufficiently careful and cautious because the two trucks never collided with
each other. By simply swerving to the right side of the road, the 6 x 6 truck
could have avoided hitting Agripino Custodio. Both drivers must have
driven their trucks not in the proper line and are, therefore, both reckless
and negligent’.

ISSUE: (1)W/N the petitioners were solidarily liale with the carrier and its driver.
(2) Whether a breach of contract may be joined with quasi delict in a cause
of action.

HELD:

* The carrier and its driver were clearly guilty of negligence for having allowed
Agripino Custodio to ride on the running board of the bus and that this negligence
was the proximate cause of Agripino’s death. It should be noted, however, that the
lower court had, likewise, found the petitioners guilty of contributory negligence,
which was as much a proximate cause of the accident as the carrier's negligence, for
petitioners’ truck was running at a considerable speed, despite the fact that it was
negotiating a sharp curve, and, instead of being close to its right side of the road,
said truck was driven on its middle portion and so near the passenger bus coming
from the opposite direction as to sideswipe a passenger riding on its running board.
* Lagunda saw the passengers riding on the running board of the bus while the same
was still 5 or 7 meters away from the truck driven by him. Indeed, the distance
between the two vehicles was such that he could have avoided sideswiping said
passengers if his truck were not running at a great speed.
* Although the negligence of the carrier and its driver is independent of the
negligence of the truck driver and its owner, both acts of negligence are the
proximate cause of the death of Agripino Custodio.
* Petitioners contend that they should not be held solidarily liable with the carrier and
its driver, because the latter's liability arises from a breach of contract, whereas that
of the former springs from a quasi-delict.
* The rule is, however, that where the concurrent or successive negligent acts or
omission of two or more persons, although acting independently of each other, are,
in combination, the direct and proximate cause of a single injury to a third person,
and it is impossible to determine in what proportion each contributed to the injury,
either is responsible for the whole injury, even though his act alone might not have
caused the entire injury, or the same damage might have resulted from the acts of
the other tort-feasor.

WHEREFORE, the decision appealed from is hereby affirmed