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Trotter v. County of Monmouth

Decided: October 1, 1976.

RICHARD TROTTER, PETITIONER-APPELLANT,
v.
COUNTY OF MONMOUTH, RESPONDENT-RESPONDENT



Halpern, Allcorn and Botter. The opinion of the court was delivered by Botter, J.A.D.

Botter

[144 NJSuper Page 431] This is an appeal from the denial of workers' compensation benefits. Petitioner suffered serious, disabling injuries in a motorcycle accident which he contends arose out of and in the course of his employment. N.J.S.A. 34:15-7. At the conclusion of proofs the judge of

compensation made the following findings which are supported by substantial, credible evidence:

The petitioner Richard Trotter, was a 21 year old employee of the County of Monmouth earning $110.00 a week on July 17, 1972 when he suffered injuries which rendered him totally disabled.

A great deal of testimony was taken as to the question of the time of the accident. The County of Monmouth Road Department, for which the petitioner worked, had a quitting time of 4:30 p.m.

The uncontradicted testimony of several witnesses was to the effect that the petitioner worked that day cutting grass and returned to the County garage with one John Adcock in a County truck around 4:00 p.m.

It was clear from the testimony that the weather was very hot and the temperature approximated 90 degrees.

When the petitioner returned to the County garage most of the road department employees had returned from their various working locations.

The petitioner and John Adcock thereafter went to the side of the garage and used the spigot and water pail to throw water on each other in an effort to cool off.

John Adcock was also the owner of a 1970 Honda motorcycle, Model CB 175, and at the time of the incident was thinking of selling the bike and getting a new one and was in fact looking for buyers.

Testimony disclosed that the petitioner did not own a motor vehicle but in fact drove a bicycle to and from work.

After the water throwing incident the petitioner went over to the cycle and sat on it. There was no testimony of any conversation at the time as to the sale or purchase of the motor bike.

John Adcock then started the motorcycle and went into the garage to get his helmet. While Adcock was inside the petitioner started to ride the ...


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