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Batch 3

Nature and extent of responsibility- 1733, 1755

1. Isaac vs. A.L. Ammen Trans. Co.
GR No. L-9671, August 23, 1957
Isaac boarded A.L Ammens bus as a passenger paying the required fair. Before
reaching his destination, the bus collided with a pick-up coming from the opposite
direction. Isaacs left hand was completely severed which fell into the bus.
Isaac filed an action for damages, alleging the gross incompetence and
recklessness of the driver of the bus. (culpa contractual) He invokes the rule that
when an action is based on a contract of carriage, all that is necessary to sustain
recovery is proof of the existence of the contract of the breach thereof by act or
A.L. Ammen argued that the injury suffered by Isaac was due entirely to the
fault/negligence of the driver of the pick-up and to the contributory negligence of
plaintiff himself. Further claiming that the accident was one which defendant could
Has defendant observe extraordinary diligence or the utmost diligence of every
cautious person, having due regard for all circumstances, in avoiding the collision
The bus driver has done what a prudent man could have done to avoid the
Appellant Isaac is guilty of contributory negligence. Isaacs left elbow was
outside the bus window which led to the severance of his left arm during the
collision. Perhaps the injury would have been avoided had he not so placed his
Contributory negligence cannot relieve the common carrier from liability but the
damages will be reduced.
However, it is the prevailing rule that it is negligence per se for a passenger to
protrude his arm, hand, elbow, or any part of the body through the window of a
moving car beyond the outer edge of the window or outer surface of the car. No

recovery can be had for an injury which would not have been sustained. Thus,
Isaac cannot recover from the common carrier.
The Bus was running at a moderate speed immediately prior to the collision
because it had just stopped at the school zone. The pick-up was at full speed and
was outside of its proper lane. To avoid the pick-up, the driver of the bus swerved
the bus to the very extreme right of the road until its front and rear wheels have
gone over the pile of stones/gravel on the rampart of the road but it could not move
further right because the pile was about 3 feet high. Notwithstanding the bus
drivers efforts, the rear left side of the bus was hit by the pick-up.
Where a carriers employee is confronted with a sudden emergency, the fact that
he is obliged to act quickly and without a chance for deliberation must be taken into
account, and he is held to the degree of care that he would otherwise be required to
exercise in the absence of such emergency but must exercise only such care as any
ordinary prudent person would exercise under like circumstances and conditions,
and the failure on his part to exercise the best judgment the case renders possible
does not establish lack of care and skill on his part.
Principles governing liability of a common carrier:
(1) The liability of a carrier is contractual and arises upon breach of its obligation.
There is breach if it fails to exert extraordinary diligence according to all
circumstances of each case;
(2) A carrier is obligated to carry its passengers with the utmost diligence of a
very cautious person, having due regard for all the circumstances;
(3) A carrier is presumed to be at fault or to have acted negligently in case of
death of, or injury to, passengers, it being its duty to prove that it exercised
extraordinary diligence;
(4) The carrier is not an insurer against all risks of travel.
2. Landingin v. Pantranco
G.R. No. L-28014, May 29, 1970
Petitioners are the parents of two girls who died while riding a bus
owned/operated by PATRANCO and driven by defendant Marcelo Oligan. The bus
was driving uphill in Bagiuo when the engine stopped, causing the bus to slide back.
When the driver suddenly swerved and steered the bus, some passengers jumped
out in panic while the two girls, Leonila and Estralla, together with some other
passengers remained seated. But the two girls later on jumped out out of panic.
Defendants argued that the driver was driving at the slow speed of 10 km/h; that
the two girls recklessly jumped out of the bus despite the drivers shouted warnings
and advice; that the bus was driven with extraordinary care, prudence and
diligence; that PATRANCO observed the care and diligence of a good father of a

family to prevent the accident as well as in the selection and supervision of its
RTC ruled that there was no negligence on both parties based on the finding that
the accident was a fortuitous event but still ordered PATRANCO to pay plaintiffs a
sum money not in payment of liability because of any negligencebut as an
expression of sympathy and goodwill. This, because PATRANCO offered to pay a
sum of money to the families of the other deceased passengers without any
Whether or not PATRANCO is liable. Whether or not the accident was a fortuitous
Yes. PATRANCO was guilty of breach of contract of carriage. It was hired to
transport the excursionist passengers from Dagupan to Bagiuo. The said two
passengers did not reach the destination safely.
As a common carrier, PATRANCO was duty bound to carry its passengers safely
as far as human care and foresight can provide, using the utmost diligence of every
cautious persons, with a due regard for all the circumstances. (Art. 1755)
PATRANCO did not exercise the required care and foresight.
No, the accident was not a caso fortuito. Accidents caused by defects in the
automobile is not a caso fortuito. The rationale of the carriers liability is the fact
that the passenger has neither the choice nor control over the carrier in the
selection and use of the equipment and appliances in use by the carrier.
(1976) When a passenger dies or is injured, the presumption is that the common
carrier is at fault or that it acted negligently. This presumption is only rebutted by
proof that the carrier observed extraordinary diligence required in Art. 1733 and the
utmost diligence of very cautious persons required in Art. 1755.
Despite PATRANCOs assertion that the bus was inspected the day before, it
seemed that it did not gave due regard for all the circumstances in connection with
the said inspection. The mere fact that the bus was inspected only recently and
found to be in order would not exempt the carrier from liability unless it is shown
that the particular circumstances under which the bus would travel were also
considered. (the bus was heavily laden passengers; traversing mountainous and
ascending roads)
3. Sulpicio Lines v. CA
G.R. No. 113578, July 14, 1995

Tito Duran and his 3-year old daughter boarded M/V Dona Marilyn , at Manila,
bringing with them several pieces of luggage. The ship encountered bad weather
while in transit. The captain ordered the vessel to proceed despite PAG-ASA raising
the storm signal, when prudence dictated that he should taken it to the nearest port
for shelter. Eventually, the vessel capsized and the passengers were thrown to the
water. Duran got separated with his daughter because of the violent waves.











Whether Sulpicio is liable for damages.

No basis for actual damages. The trial court merely mentioned the fact of the
loss and the value of the contents of the pieces of baggage without stating the
evidence on which it based its findings. There is no showing that the value of the
contents was based on the bill of lading or was previously declared by Duran before
boarding the ship.
Common carriers are liable for actual or compensatory damages under Article
2206 (death due to crime or quasi delict) in relation to Art. 1764 for the deaths of its
passengers caused by the breach of the contract of transportation.
Moral damages. The general rule is that moral damages are not recoverable in
culpa contractual except when the presence of bad faith was proven. However, in
breach of contract of carriage, moral damages may be recovered when it results in
the death of a passenger.
Exemplary damages. The Court is given the discretion by Art. 2232 to grant
exemplary damages in breach of contract when the defendant acted in a wanton,
fraudulent, and reckless manner.
The common carrier is obliged to transport its passengers to their
destination with the utmost diligence of a very cautious person. Sulpicio failed to
exercise the extraordinary diligence required of a common carrier, which resulted in
the sinking. The trial court correctly concluded that the sinking was due to gross
negligence by proceeding despite the storm signals announced.
No attorneys fees.
4. Yrasuegui v. PAL
G.R. No. 168081, October 17, 2008
Armando Yrasuegui was a former international flight steward of PAL; 58 with
a large frame. The ideal weight of a man of his structure is from 147 to 166 pounds,

as per PAL manual. Petitioner failed to meet PAL weight standards weighing 209
lbs. PAL advised him to on an extended vacation leave to address his weight
concerns. He met the required weight and resumed work but the weight problem
recurred. He was removed from flight duty until his weight returned back to the
ideal weight standards. This set-up went on for 5 years. Petitioner failed to report for
weight checks while continue being off-duty. Finally, he was terminated for failure to
attain his ideal weight.
LA found illegal dismissal. NLRC affirmed but included allowances and other
benefits or their monetary equivalent instead of simply backwages, finding that
there was no intentional defiance or serious misconduct to PALs lawful order since
obesity or the tendency to gain weight uncontrollably regardless of the amount of
food intake is a disease in itself.
CA reversed, ruling that the weight standards meant to be a continuing
qualification for an employees position.
Whether petitioner was illegally dismissed.
Whether the weight standards of PAL are reasonable.
No. The obesity is a ground for dismissal. The weight standards are
continuing qualifications. The dismissal of petitioner can be predicated on the bona
fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) defense. BFOQ is valid provided it reflects an
inherent quality reasonably necessary for satisfactory job performance.
Meiorin Test to determine whether an employment policy is justified:
(1) The employer must show that it adopted the standard for a purpose
rationally connected to the performance of the job;
(2) The employer must establish that the standard is reasonably necessary to
the accomplishment of that work-related purpose;
(3) The employer must establish that the standard is reasonably necessary in
order to accomplish the legitimate work-related purpose.
To justify BFOQ, the employer must prove that:
(1) The employment qualification is reasonably related to the essential
operation of the job involved; and
(2) That there is factual basis for believing that all or substantially all
persons meeting the qualification would be unable to properly perform
the duties of the job.
Yes, PALs weight standards are reasonable. A common carrier, from the
nature of its business and for reasons of public policy, is bound to observe
extraordinary diligence for the safety of the passengers it transports. It is bound to

carry its passengers safely as far as human care and foresight can provide, using
the utmost diligence of very cautious persons, with due regard for all the
The law leaves no room for mistake or oversight on the part of the common
carrier. It is only logical to hold that the weight standards of PAL show its effort to
comply with the exacting obligations imposed upon it by law by virtue of being a
common carrier. The weight standards should be viewed as imposing strict norms of
discipline upon its employees.
The primary objective of PAL in the imposition of the weight standards for
cabin crew is flight safety. The task of a cabin crew or flight attendant is not limited
to serving meals or attending to the whims and caprices of the passengers. The
most important activity of the cabin crew is to care for the safety of passengers and
the evacuation of the aircraft when an emergency occurs. Passenger safety goes to
the core of the job of a cabin attendant. Truly, airlines need cabin attendants who
have the necessary strength to open emergency doors, the agility to attend to
passengers in cramped working conditions, and the stamina to withstand grueling
flight schedules. On board an aircraft, the body weight and size of a cabin attendant
are important factors to consider in case of emergency.
It would also be absurd to require airline companies to reconfigure the aircraft
in order to widen the aisles and exit doors just to accommodate overweight cabin
attendants like petitioner. The biggest problem with an overweight cabin attendant
is the possibility of impeding passengers from evacuating the aircraft, should the
occasion call for it. The job of a cabin attendant during emergencies is to speedily
get the passengers out of the aircraft safely. Being overweight necessarily impedes
mobility. Indeed, in an emergency situation, seconds are what cabin attendants are
dealing with, not minutes. Three lost seconds can translate into three lost lives.
Evacuation might slow down just because a widebodied cabin attendant is blocking
the narrow aisles. These possibilities are not remote.
Duration of responsibility- 1736
Article 17, Warsaw Convention
Article 698, Code of Commerce
5. Del Prado v. MERALCO
G.R. No. L-29462, March 7, 1929
MERALCO is engaged in operating street cars for the conveyance of passengers.
Del Prado raised his hand to signal the motorman driving the street car of his desire
to board the car. The motorman eased up a little, but without stopping. Del Prado
held the front perpendicular handspot and at the same time placed his left foot

upon the platform. Before his right foot reached the platform, the motorman applied
power and the car gave a slight lurch forward. Del Prados foot slipped and his hand
was jerked loose from the handspot and fell to the ground. But his right foot was
caught and crushed by the moving car. His right foot was amputated.
The motorman stated that he did not see the plaintiff attempting to board the
car and that he did not accelerate the speed of the car. He only noticed after the
plaintiff had been hurt.
MERALCO, in its defense, stated that it had used the diligence of a good father of
a family to prevent the damage by showing due care, training and instruction given
Whether MERALCO is liable.
There is no obligation on the part of a street railway company to stop its cars to
let on intending passengers at other spots than those appointed for stoppage.
Nevertheless, although the motorman was not bound to stop to let the plaintiff on, it
was his duty to do act that would have the effect of increasing the plaintiffs peril
while he was attempting to board the car. The premature acceleration was a breach
of this duty.
The duty that the carrier owes to its patrons extends to persons boarding the
cars as well as to those alighting therefrom.
Tort: Art. 1902; employer may exculpate himself by providing that he had
exercised due diligence to prevent the damage (Art. 1903, last par.); no general
discretion in dealing with liability arising from 1902
Culpa contractual: Art. 1101; this defense is not available; the court is given
discretion to mitigate liability according to the circumstances of the case
MERALCOs defense is irrelevant since this is a breach of an obligation under Art.
The contributory negligence of plaintiff should be treated as a mitigating
circumstance under Art. 1103. The plaintiffs negligence in attempting to board the
moving car was not the proximate cause of the injury. The direct and proximate
cause of the injury was the act of the motorman in putting on the power
prematurely. A person boarding a moving car must be taken to assume the risk of
injury from boarding the car under the conditions open to his view, but he cannot
fairly be held to assume the risk that the motorman, having the situation in view,
will increase his peril by accelerating the speed of the car before he is planted

safely on the platform. Again, the situation before us is one where the negligent act
of the company's servant succeeded the negligent act of the plaintiff, and the
negligence of the company must be considered the proximate cause of the injury.
The rule here applicable seems to be analogous to, if not identical with that which is
sometimes referred to as the doctrine of "the last clear chance." In accordance with
this doctrine, the contributory negligence of the party injured will not defeat the
action if it be shown that the defendant might, by the exercise of reasonable care
and prudence, have avoided the consequences of the negligence of the injured

6. Aboitiz Shipping vs. CA

G.R. No. 84458, November 6, 1989
Anacleto Viana, 40, boarded the vessel M/V Antonia bound for Manila. Arriving at
the Manila pier, a gangplank was provided connecting the side of the vessel to the
pier. Instead of using the gangplank, Viana disembarked on the third deck which
was on the level with the pier. The Pioneer Stevedoring took over the exclusive
control of the cargoes loaded on the vessel pursuant to a MOA between Pioneer and
Aboitiz. Pioneer used a crane to unload the cargoes. While the crane was being
operated, Viana remembered some of his cargoes were still loaded in the vessel, so
he went back to the vessel. While he was pointing to the crew the place where his
cargoes were loaded, the crane hit him and pinned him between the side of the
vessel and the crane. He died 3 days later.
Aboitiz denied responsibility contending that at the time of the accident, the
vessel was completely under the control of Pioneer Stevedoring as its exclusive
stevedoring contractor; that since the crane operator was not its employee, it
cannot be held liable under the fellow-servant rule. It filed third-party complaint
against Pioneer alleging that Vianas death was caused by the negligence of the
crane operator.
RTC ordered Aboitiz to pay the Vianas and Pioneer to reimburse Aboitiz for
whatever amount it paid to the Vianas. And later on, absolve Pioneer for failure to
establish negligence against the crane operator, since the MOA only referred to
Pioneers liability in case of loss/damage to goods handled by it, not to personal
injuries and that Aboitiz cannot invoke the fellow-servant rule since liability arose
from breach of contract.
Both RTC and CA found Viana guilty of contributory negligence but held that
Aboitizs negligence in prematurely turning over the vessel to the arrastre operator
which was the direct, immediate and proximate cause of the victims death.

Aboitiz contends that Viana ceased to be a passenger since 1 hour had elapsed
from his disembarkation and he was given ample time to unload his cargoes prior to
the operation of the crane and his presence on the vessel was no longer reasonable.
Viana was still a passenger at the time of the incident. Viana was unloading his
cargo at the time of the incident, for which he had every right to do.
A carrier is duty bound not only to bring its passengers safely to their destination
but also to afford them a reasonable time to claim their baggage.
The rule is that the relation of carrier and passenger continues until the
passenger has been landed at the port of destination and has left the vessel owner's
dock or premises. Once created, the relationship will not ordinarily terminate until
the passenger has, after reaching his destination, safely alighted from the carrier's
conveyance or had a reasonable opportunity to leave the carrier's premises. All
persons who remain on the premises a reasonable time after leaving the
conveyance are to be deemed passengers, and what is a reasonable time or a
reasonable delay within this rule is to be determined from all the circumstances,
and includes a reasonable time to see after his baggage and prepare for his
departure. The carrierpassenger relationship is not terminated merely by the fact
that the person transported has been carried to his destination if, for example, such
There is reasonable/justifiable cause for Vianas presence in the vessel.
It is of common knowledge that, by the very nature of petitioner's business as a
shipper, the passengers of vessels are allotted a longer period of time to disembark
from the ship than other common carriers such as a passenger bus. With respect to
the bulk of cargoes and the number of passengers it can load, such vessels are
capable of accommodating a bigger volume of both as compared to the capacity of
a regular commuter bus.
Where a passenger dies or is injured, the common carrier is presumed to have
been at fault or to have acted negligently. This gives rise to a breach of contract of
carriage, where all that is required is to prove the existence of the contract and its
non-performance by the carrier. Aboitiz failed to rebut the presumption against it. It
did not prove that it exercised the diligence required of it to prevent the accident
from happening.
Aboitiz contends that there were sufficient signs warning the passengers that the
area was fraught with serious peril. However, these were insufficient precautions
considering the gravity of the danger to which the deceased was exposed. There is
no showing that petitioner was extraordinarily diligent in requiring or seeing to it
that said precautionary measures were strictly and actually enforced to subserve
their purpose of preventing entry into the forbidden area.

While the victim was admittedly contributorily negligent, still petitioner's

aforesaid failure to exercise extraordinary diligence was the proximate and direct
cause of, because it could definitely have prevented, the former's death.
Pioneer is absolved of liability; there was no negligence on its part. Pioneer is not
within the ambit of the rule on extraordinary diligence required of and the
corresponding presumption of negligence foisted on common carriers.
7. PAL vs. CA & Zapatos
G.R. No. L-82619, September 15, 1993
Zapatos filed a complaint for damages for breach of contract of carriage
against PAL. He took a flight from Cebu-Ozamiz. 15 minutes before landing at
Ozamiz, the pilot received a radio message that the airport was closed due to heavy
rains and inclement weather and that he should proceed to Cotabato City instead.
He was not given accommodation to the flight back to Cebu and the flight the
next day to Ozamiz. His belongings (including camera worth 2k) were still on board
when the plane flew back to Cebu and were no longer recovered. He received under
protest a free ticket to Iligan. PAL did not provide him with transportation from the
airport to the city proper nor food and accommodation for his stay in Cotabato. The
next day, he purchased a ticket to Iligan, informing PAL he would not use the free
ticket because he was filing a case against it.
RTC ordered PAL to pay. CA affirmed.
Whether PAL is liable.
PAL did not rebut the evidence alleging its negligence in caring for its
stranded passengers.
The contract of air carriage is a peculiar one. Being imbued with public
interest, the law requires common carriers to carry the passengers safely as far as
human care and foresight can provide, using the utmost diligence of every cautious
persons, with due regard for all circumstances.
Undisputably, PAL's diversion of its flight due to inclement weather was a
fortuitous event. Nonetheless, such occurrence did not terminate PAL's contract with
its passengers. Being in the business of air carriage and the sole one to operate in
the country, PAL is deemed equipped to deal with situations as in the case at bar.
What we said in one case once again must be stressed, i.e., the relation of carrier

and passenger continues until the latter has been landed at the port of destination
and has left the carrier's premises. Hence, PAL necessarily would still have to
exercise extraordinary diligence in safeguarding the comfort, convenience and
safety of its stranded passengers until they have reached their final destination. On
this score, PAL grossly failed considering the then ongoing battle between
government forces and Muslim rebels in Cotabato City and the fact that the private
respondent was a stranger to the place.
Since part of the failure to comply with the obligation of common carrier to
deliver its passengers safely to their destination lay in the defendant's failure to
provide comfort and convenience to its stranded passengers using extraordinary
diligence, the cause of nonfulfillment is not solely and exclusively due to fortuitous
event, but due to something which defendant airline could have prevented,
defendant becomes liable to plaintiff.
Admittedly, private respondent's insistence on being given priority in
accommodation was unreasonable considering the fortuitous event and that there
was a sequence to be observed in the booking, i.e., in the order the passengers
checked in at their port of origin. His intransigence in fact was the main cause for
his having to stay at the airport longer than was necessary. (moral damages is
Presumption of Negligence- Art. 1756
Force Majeure
8. Bachelor Express vs. CA
G.R. No. 85691, July 31, 1990
A bus owned by Bachelor express and driven by Cresencio Rivera was the
situs of a stampeded which resulted in the death of passengers Ornominio Beter
and Narcisa Rautraut.
A passenger at the rear portion suddenly stabbed a PC soldier which caused
commotion and panic among the passengers. When the bus stopped, the two said
passengers were found lying on the road and dead because of head injuries. The
passenger-assailant ran alighted the bus and ran towards the bushes but was killed
by the police. The heirs of the deceased filed a complaint for a sum of money
against Bachelor Express, the owner, and the driver Rivera.
RTC dismissed complaint and later on reversed and found Bachelor Express,
its owner and the driver solidarily liable.
Bachelor Express, Inc. denies liability for the death of Beter and Rautraut on
its posture that the death of the said passengers was caused by a third person who
was beyond its control and supervision; that the accident resulting in the death of

the two passengers was caused by force majeure over which the CC did not have
any control. (1174)
Whether or not Bachelor Express is liable.
The liability is anchored on culpa contractual.
Bachelor Express, being a CC, is presumed to have acted negligently unless it
can prove that it had observed extraordinary diligence in accordance with Art. 1733
and 1755.
A caso fortuito presents the following essential characteristics: (1) The cause
of the unforeseen and unexpected occurrence, or of the failure of the debtor to
comply with his obligation, must be independent of the human will. (2) It must be
impossible to foresee the event which constitutes the caso fortuito, or if it can be
foreseen, it must be impossible to avoid. (3) The occurrence must be such as to
render it impossible for the debtor to fulfill his obligation in a normal manner. And
(4) the obligor (debtor) must be free from any participation in the aggravation of the
injury resulting to the creditor.
The running amuck of the passenger was the proximate cause of the incident
as it triggered off a commotion an panic among the passengers such that the
passengers started running to the sole exit shoving each other resulting in the
falling off the bus by passengers Beter and Rautraut causing them fatal injuries. The
sudden act o the passenger who stabbed another passenger in the bus is within the
context of force majeure.
However, in order that a common carrier may be absolved from liability in
case of force majeure, it is not enough that the accident was caused by force
majeure. The common carrier must still prove that it was not negligent I causing the
injuries resulting from such accident.
The CC was negligent in the provision of safety precautions so that its
passengers may be transported safely to their destinations. The door was not
locked as to prevent the passengers from alighting. The conductor opened the door
when the passengers started shouting. The door was forced open by the onrushing
The speed of the bus was not slow, 30/40.
Appeals the bus driver did not immediately stop the bus at the height of the
commotion the bus was speeding from a full stop the victims fell from the bus door
when it was opened or gave way while the bus was still running the conductor

panicked and blew his whistle after people had already fallen off the bus and the
bus was not properly equipped with doors in accordance with lawit is clear that the
petitioners have failed to overcome the presumption of fault and negligence found
in the law governing common carriers.
Limitation of liability- 1757-1758
Responsibility for acts of employees- 1759-1760
9. De Gillaco v. MRR, 97 Phil 884
G.R. No. L-8034, November 18, 1955
Lieut. Tomas Gillaco, plaintiffs husband, was shot dead by the MRR guard, Emilio
Devesa, who had a personal grudge against Gillaco dating back during the Japanese
The trial court held the MRR liable on the ground that a contract of
transportation implies protection of the passengers against acts of personal
violence by the agents or employees of the carrier.
Whether MRR is liable.
There can be no quarrel with the principle that a passenger is entitled to
protection from personal violence by the carrier or its agents or employees, since
the contract of transportation obligates the carrier to transport a passenger safely
to his destination. But this responsibility extends only to those that the carrier could
foresee or avoid through the exercise of the degree of care and diligence required of
The act of guard Devesa in shooting passenger Gillaco (because of a personal
grudge nurtured against the latter since the Japanese occupation) was entirely
unforeseeable by the Manila Railroad Co. The latter had no means to ascertain or
anticipate that the two would meet, nor could it reasonably foresee every personal
rancor that might exist between each one of its many employees and any one of the
thousands of eventual passengers riding in its trains. The shooting in question was
therefore "caso fortuito" within the definition of article 105 of the old Civil Code,
being both unforeseeable and inevitable under the given circumstances and
pursuant to established doctrine, the resulting breach of appellant's contract of safe
carriage with the late Tomas Gillaco was excused thereby.
No doubt that a common carrier is held to a very high degree of care and
diligence in the protection of its passengers but, considering the vast and complex
activities of modern rail transportation, to require of appellant that it should guard

against all possible misunderstanding between each and every one of its employees
and every passenger that might chance to ride in its conveyances at any time,
strikes us as demanding diligence beyond what human care and foresight can
When the crime took place, the guard Devesa had no duties to discharge in
connection with the transportation of the deceased from Calamba to Manila. The
stipulation of facts is clear that when Devesa shot and killed Gillaco, Devesa was
assigned to guard the ManilaSan Fernando (La Union) trains, and he was at Paco
Station awaiting transportation to Tutuban, the starting point of the train that he
was engaged to guard. In fact, his tour of duty was to start at 9:00 a.m., two hours
after the commission of the crime. Devesa was therefore under no obligation to
safeguard the passenger of the CalambaManila train, where the deceased was
riding and the killing of Gillaco was not done in line of duty.
The position of Devesa at the time was that of another would be passenger, a
stranger also awaiting transportation, and not that of an employee assigned to
discharge any of the duties that the Railroad had assumed by its contract with the
deceased. As a result, Devesa's assault cannot be deemed in law a breach of
Gillaco's contract of transportation by a servant or employee of the carrier.
LRTA vs. Navidad
G.R. No. 145804, February 6, 2003
Nicanor Navidad, while drunk, entered EDSA LRT station after purchasing a
token (representing payment of the fare). While standing on the platform near the
LRT tracks, a security guard, Escartin, approached him. A misunderstanding
between the two led to a fist fight (2 drunk men?) and Navidad later fell on the LRT
tracks. Navidad was struck by the moving train driven by Rodolfo Roman and
instantaneously killed.
RTC found Prudent and Escartin liable. However, Light Rail Transit Authority
(LRTA) and Rodolfo Roman was found liable for damages by the CA. While Prudent
Security Agency and Escartin were exonerated from liability, ruling that a contract
of carriage already existed when Navidad entered the place where passengers were
supposed to be after paying the fare and getting the corresponding token.
Petitioners now insist that Escartins assault upon Navidad, which caused the
latter to fall on the tracks, was an act of a stranger that could not have been
(a) Whether LRTA is liable under the contract of carriage.
(b) Should Prudent Security Agency be likewise liable? Should Roman be

(c) What is the liability of the common carrier and an independent contractor?
(a) Yes. Such duty of a common carrier to provide safety to its passengers so
obligates it not only during the course of the trip but for so long as the
passengers are within its premises and where they ought to be in
pursuance to the contract of carriage.
The statutory provisions render a common carrier liable for death of or injury
to passengers (a) through the negligence or wilful acts of its employees or b) on
account of wilful acts or negligence of other passengers or of strangers if the
common carriers employees through the exercise of due diligence could have
prevented or stopped the act or omission. (1759)
In case of such death or injury, a carrier is presumed to have been at fault or
been negligent, and by simple proof of injury, the passenger is relieved of the duty
to still establish the fault or negligence of the carrier or of its employees and the
burden shifts upon the carrier to prove that the injury is due to an unforeseen event
or to force majeure.
The foundation of LRTAs liability is the contract of carriage and its obligation
to indemnify the victim arises from the breach of that contract by reason of its
failure to exercise the high diligence required of the common carrier. In the
discharge of its commitment to ensure the safety of passengers, a carrier may
choose to hire its own employees or avail itself of the services of an outsider or an
independent firm to undertake the task. In either case, the common carrier is not
relieved of its responsibilities under the contract of carriage.
(b) For tort under Art. 2176, in conjunction with Art. 2180.
The premise, however, for the employers liability is negligence or fault on
the part of the employee. Once such fault is established, the employer can
then be made liable on the basis of the presumption juris tantum that the
employer failed to exercise diligentissimi patris families in the selection
and supervision of its employees. The liability is primary and can only be
negated by showing due diligence in the selection and supervision of the
employee, a factual matter that has not been shown.
There is no link between Prudent and the death of Navidad, for the reason
that the negligence of its employee, Escartin, has not been duly proven.
Roman is als not liable. There is no showing that he is guilty of any
culpable act/omission. The contractual tie between LRT and Navidad is not
a juridical relation between Navidadd and Roman. Roman can be made
liable only for his own fault or negligence.
(c) Solidary.

A contractual obligation can be breached by tort and when the same act
or omission causes the injury, one resulting in culpa contractual and the
other in culpa aquiliana, Article 2194 of the Civil Code can well apply. In
fine, a liability for tort may arise even under a contract, where tort is that
which breaches the contract. Stated differently, when an act which
constitutes a breach of contract would have itself constituted the source
of a quasidelictual liability had no contract existed between the parties,
the contract can be said to have been breached by tort, thereby allowing
the rules on tort to apply.

Responsibility for acts of strangers and co-passengers- Art. 1763

Pilapil vs. CA
G.R. No. 52159, December 22, 1989
Pilapil, a paying passenger, boarded Alatco Transportations bus. While on
due course, an unidentified man, a bystander along the national highway, hurled a
stone at the left side of the bus, which hit petitioner above his left eye. Pilapil
partially lost his left eyes vision and sustained a permanent above the left eye and
because of which he filed an action for recovery of damages. RTC granted him
damages; CA reversed.
Pilapil argues that the nature of the business of transportation company
requires the assumption of certain risks and that the stoning of the bus by a
stranger is one such risk which the common carrier may not exempt itself from
(a) Whether the common carrier assumed the risk of a stranger stoning the
(b) Did the common carrier rebut the presumption of negligence?
(a) No. In consideration of the right granted to it by the public to engage in
the business of transporting passengers and goods, a common carrier
does not give its consent to become an insurer of any and all risks to
passengers and goods. It merely undertakes to perform certain duties to
the public as the law imposes, and holds itself liable for any breach

While the law requires the highest degree of diligence from common carriers
in the safe transport of their passengers and creates a presumption of negligence
against them, it does not, however, make the carrier an insurer of the absolute
safety of its passengers.
Article 1755 of the Civil Code qualifies the duty of extraordinary care,
vigilance and precaution in the carriage of passengers by common carriers to only
such as human care and foresight can provide. What constitutes compliance with
said duty is adjudged with due regard to all the circumstances.
Article 1756 of the Civil Code, in creating a presumption of fault or negligence
on the part of the common carrier when its passenger is injured, merely relieves the
latter, for the time being, from introducing evidence to fasten the negligence on the
former, because the presumption stands in the place of evidence. Being a mere
presumption, however, the same is rebuttable by proof that the common carrier had
exercised extraordinary diligence as required by law in the performance of its
contractual obligation, or that the injury suffered by the passenger was solely due to
a fortuitous event.
Thus, it is clear that neither the law nor the nature of the business of a
transportation company makes it an insurer of the passenger's safety, but that its
liability for personal injuries sustained by its passenger rests upon its negligence, its
failure to exercise the degree of diligence that the law requires.
(b) Yes. Where, as in the instant case, the injury sustained by the petitioner
was in no way due to any defect in the means of transport or in the method of
transporting or to the negligent or willful acts of private respondent's employees,
and therefore involving no issue of negligence in its duty to provide safe and
suitable cars as well as competent employees, with the injury arising wholly from
causes created by strangers over which the carrier had no control or even
knowledge or could not have prevented, the presumption is rebutted and the carrier
is not and ought not to be held liable. To rule otherwise would make the common
carrier the insurer of the absolute safety of its passengers which is not the intention
of the lawmakers.
Extraordinary diligence is not the standard to determine CCs liability when
intervening acts of strangers is the direct cause of the injury.
Article 1763. A common carrier is responsible for injuries suffered by a
passenger on account of the wilful acts or negligence of other passengers or
of strangers, if the common carrier's employees through the exercise of the
diligence of a good father of a family could have prevented or stopped the
act or omission.
Duty of passenger, effect of contributory negligence0 1761-1762