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Witt Ice & Gas Co. v. Bedway

Supreme Court of Arizona

May 28, 1951

WITT ICE & GAS CO.
v.
BEDWAY

Judgment affirmed.

H. M. Van Denburgh, Phoenix, for appellant.

Evans, Hull, Kitchel & Jenckes, Phoenix, for appellee.

Farley, Superior Court Judge. Udall, C. J., and Stanford, De Concini and La Prade, JJ., concur. Phelps, J., being disqualified, the Honorable Gordon Farley, Judge of the Superior Court of Santa Cruz County, was called to sit in his stead.

OPINION

Farley, Superior Court Judge.

Page 953

[72 Ariz. 154] The plaintiff, John E. Bedway, instituted this action against Harlan Diehl, George Schaerges and the Witt Ice & Gas Company to recover damages for personal injuries sustained by him as the result of the explosion of a beer keg. The explosion occurred in the Troc Buffet in Phoenix on November 15, 1947, while the plaintiff was engaged in his duties as a bartender. At the time of the accident Diehl was in the business of installing beer dispensing equipment and employed Schaerges as his assistant. The two of them installed the beer dispensing equipment at the Troc Buffet on the day prior to the accident.

In the installation process it was necessary to connect a tank or cylinder of carbon dioxide gas as a component part of the beer dispenser in order to force the beer from the keg through the outlets on the bar. This was done by means of a copper tubing which was connected to the gas cylinder at the top, where a regulator was installed which gauged the flow of CO[2] gas into the beer barrel.

It was the plaintiff's contention that because the regulator was defective it did not properly regulate the flow of gas, and that as a consequence the explosion occurred which resulted in plaintiff's injuries.

[72 Ariz. 155] The regulator was obtained from the defendant Witt Ice & Gas Company by defendant Diehl for the Troc Buffet, and it was delivered to the Buffet by an employee of the company at the time of delivery of the gas cylinder, and it was thereafter installed by Diehl. The jury determined that the defendant Witt Ice & Gas Company was negligent in selling a defective regulator but exonerated the defendants Diehl and Schaerges, so that this appeal is being prosecuted only by the Witt Ice & Gas Company, on numerous grounds which will be hereinafter indicated.

The appellant has assigned as error the introduction of the regulator and its exhibition

Page 954

to the jury in a disassembled state on several grounds which, broadly stated, are that it was not the manufacturer and had not made any representations or warranty concerning it, or had any knowledge of any defects in it; that it was admitted in evidence by the court solely for the purpose of demonstrating its outward ...


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