of the rules. Klaff acknowledged receipt of the process on March 30, 1970. It should be observed that under both Federal and New Jersey Rules, this latter method of service cannot be utilized unless all other means fail; provided, however, that the requirements of federal due process are observed. This additional attempt to effect service of process upon the foreign corporation enables this Court to determine the validity of both methods employed upon the one motion challenging the complaint in the third-party action.
In regard to the first method of service or process under Rule 4(f), involving construction of the 100-mile extra-territorial "bulge" of judicial jurisdiction, research has revealed no reported case providing a yardstick by which this distance is to be measured. The second method, under Rule 4(e) providing for service by mail upon a foreign corporation, raises an issue as to whether there are "sufficient minimal corporate contacts" with the State of New Jersey within due process of law, so as to subject such corporation to judicial jurisdiction here.
Klaff contends that its place of business, by use of the "ordinary, usual and shortest route of public travel," is situated more than 100 miles from this forum. This contention is supported by various affidavits
executed by official representatives of car, rail and air transportation companies, and also by a private investigator. A combination of any of these media shows a range of 102.8 to 115 miles from Klaff's office to this forum. The range will vary, of course, depending upon the termini points, i.e., railroad station to railroad station, airport to airport, center city to center city, state border to state border, or courthouse to courthouse, or courthouse to place of service.
The position of Engelhard is that the measurement of distance to be employed, in giving realistic effect to Rule 4(f), is by use of the straight-line, i.e., "as the crow flies" test. In utilizing this construction, Klaff is within the 100-mile radius of this forum and subject to in personam process as a third-party defendant.
Engelhard claims that by employment of a Bates National Ruler calibrated to 1/16 of an inch upon the official map of Rand McNally Road Atlas, 1969, the distance from Baltimore to Camden has been computed to be 91 miles, more or less. Engelhard's approximation of road mileage between downtown Baltimore and downtown Camden, as calculated by the Motor Club of America, is 102-105 miles, pointing up the closeness to the 100-mile limit.
In considering the first issue, the 100-mile "bulge" of federal jurisdictional reach of process, we are confronted with a choice between two possible yardsticks with which to measure the distance: (1) the "ordinary, usual and shortest route of public travel" to the forum, or (2) the straight-line "as the crow flies" method.
The purpose of the so-called "bulge" provision in the federal rules is spelled out in the Comments of the Advisory Committee on Rules, 3A Barron & Holtzoff, Fed. Pract. & Proced. (1969 Supp. p. 235):
"The bringing in of parties under the 100-mile provision in the limited situations enumerated is designed to promote the objective of enabling the court to determine entire controversies. In the light of present-day facilities for communication and travel, the territorial range of the service allowed, analogous to that which applies to the service of a subpoena under Rule 45(e)(1), can hardly work hardship on the parties summoned. The provision will be especially useful in metropolitan areas spanning more than one State." (Italics supplied.)
Cognizant of the fact that in subpoena situations under Rule 45(e)(1), the "ordinary, usual and shortest route" has been utilized by the courts, nevertheless, we are of the view that the straight-line, or the "as the crow flies" test seems to be the more realistic choice. Where, as here, the question of distance is a close one, the "ordinary, usual and shortest" method is troublesome. In this era of mobility, what may be shortest may not necessarily be ordinary or usual. Modes of transportation, choices of routes, traffic congestion, road construction, detours, weather conditions, rerouting of air traffic are a few of the daily problems presenting too many variables and imponderables. And who is to be the final arbiter? Adoption of the "as the crow flies" method, calculated simply by use of a map and a ruler, would avoid these myriad problems. Axiomatically, the arithmetical straight-line is the shortest distance between two points. Judicial notice may be taken of the distance between two cities. Munson S.S. Lines v. Newman, 24 F.2d 416 (5 Cir. 1928). Cf.: Merchant Bank of N.Y. v. Grove Silk Co., 11 F.R.D. 439 (M.D. Pa. 1951) which, under Rule 45 F.R. Civ. P., adopted the "ordinary usual and shortest route of public travel and not [the] mathematically straight line between the place of service and the place of trial." This rule seems to be bottomed upon the convenience of witnesses. While convenience of parties, witnesses and counsel is always of concern, such can hardly be contrasted to a judicial concern under Rule 4(f) with the extraterritorial reach of the judicial jurisdiction in personam over parties upon whom judgment is to be imposed. In any event, witnesses beyond the reach of a subpoena can always be deposed. It seems to us that the test is "reasonableness" in light of the objective to be achieved, in one instance -- the convenience of witnesses and in the other -- the extraterritorial reach of judicial jurisdiction over a party, consistent with the requirements of due process of law. International Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310, 66 S. Ct. 154, 90 L. Ed. 95 (1945); L.D. Reeder Contractors of Ariz. v. Higgins Industries, 265 F.2d 768 (9 Cir. 1959).
Such an outstanding authority as Professor Moore champions the "as the crow flies" method, saying:
"While the wording does not make clear how the distance of 100 miles is to be calculated in close cases, since the purpose of this provision is mildly to extend the territorial limits of effective service of the federal courts to facilitate determining whole controversies, the method of calculation which would lend itself to this objective should be followed. Thus such service should be allowed any place within the United States which is within a radius of 100 miles 'as the crow flies' from the federal court in which the action is pending." 2 Moore's Federal Practice P4.42, p. 1293.32 (1967). (Emphasis supplied.)