FGU INSURANCE CORP. VS. G.P. SARMIENTO TRUCKING CORP. (GPS)G.R. No. 141910.

August 6,
2002Facts: GPS is an exclusive contractor and hauler of Concepcion Industries, Inc. One day, it was to deliver
certaingoods of Concepcion Industries, Inc. aboard one of its trucks. On its way, the truck collided with an
unidentifiedtruck, resulting in damage to the cargoes.FGU, insurer of the shipment paid to Concepcion Industries,
Inc. the amount of the damage and filed a suit againstGPS. GPS filed a motion to dismiss for failure to prove that it
was a common carrier.
Issue: Whether or not GPS falls under the category of a common carrier.
Held: Note that GPS is an exclusive contractor and hauler of Concepcion Industries, Inc. offering its service to
noother individual or entity. A common carrier is one which offers its services whether to the public in general or
to a limited clientele in particular but never on an exclusive basis. Therefore, GPS does not fit the category of a
common carrier although it is not freedfrom its liability based on culpa contractual

FGU Insurance vs Sarmiento Trucking

Respondent G.P. Sarmiento Trucking (GPS) undertook to deliver units of Condura S.D. white refrigerators
aoard one of its Su!uki Truck driven " #amert $roles from the its plant site in %laang to the
Central %ppliance in Dagupan.

&n its wa" it collided with an unidenti'ed truck causing it to fall into a deep canal resulting in
damage to the cargoes.

Petitioner G* +nsruance as the insurer of the shipment paid Conception +ndustries the value of
the covered cargoes in turn eing sugrogee of the rights and interest of Conception +ndustries. Petitioner
sought reimursement of the amount it had paid theRespondent.

Respondent GPS failed to heed the claim of the Petitioner thus Petitioner 'led a complaint for damages and
reach of contract of carriage against Respondent GPS and its driver $roles with the RTC

%fter Petitioner presented their evidence Respondent GPS 'led a leave of court a motion to dismiss the
complaint " wa" of demurrer to evidence on the ground that petitioner had failed to prove that it was
a common carries.

RTC granted the motion to dismiss.

C% ruled in favor of the Respondent and denied the appeal of the petitioner.+ssue, -/ the doctrine of Res +PS%
#&0*+T*R as invoke " Petitioner is applicale to the instant case1Ruling, /& the doctrine of Res +psa
#o2uitur is not applicale.

The doctrine of Res +psa #o2uitur holds a defendant liale where the thing which caused the
in3ur" complained of is shown to e under his management and the accident is such in the

• +t is not applicale when an une4plained accident ma" e attriutale to one of several causes for some of which the defendant could not e responsile. +n the current case the deliver" of thegoods in its custod" to the place of destination gives rise to a presumption of lack of care and corresponding liailit" on the part of the contractual oligor the urden eing on him to estalish otherwise from which GPS has failed to do so. . The ma4im places on the defendant the urden of going forward with the proof. +t a5ords reasonale evidence in the asence of e4planation " the defendant that the accident arose from want of care.ordinar" course of things cannot e e4pected to happen if those who have its management or control use proper care. • Respondent trucking corporation recogni!es the e4istence of a contract of carriage etween it and the petitioner and admits that the cargoes it has assumed to deliver have een lost or damaged while in its custod". • The doctrine generall" 'nds relevance whether or not a contractual relationship e4ist etween the plainti5 and the defendant for the inference of negligence arises from the circumstances and nature of the occurrence and not from the nature of the relation of the parties. • +t is a mode of proof or a mere procedural convenience since it furnishes a sustitute for and relieves the plainti5 of the urden of producing speci'c proof of negligence. +t should e understood as eing con'ned onl" to cases of pure(non6contractual) tort since oviousl" the presumption of negligence in culpa contractual as previousl" pointed out immediatel" attaches " a failure of the covenant or its tenor.