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Badorski v. Commonwealth Edison Co.

OPINION FILED SEPTEMBER 24, 1980.

DAVID BADORSKI, PLAINTIFF,

v.

COMMONWEALTH EDISON COMPANY, DEFENDANT AND THIRD-PARTY PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT. — (H.H. ROBERTSON COMPANY, THIRD-PARTY DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.)



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. PAUL F. ELWARD, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE RIZZI DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Plaintiff, David Badorski, brought this action for negligence and violation of the Structural Work Act (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1977, ch. 48, pars. 60-69) against defendant, Commonwealth Edison Company. Edison filed a third-party complaint for indemnity against plaintiff's employer, H.H. Robertson Company. The trial court dismissed the third amended third-party complaint of Edison with prejudice. We reverse.

In his complaint, plaintiff alleges that on October 20, 1974, he was a construction worker employed by H.H. Robertson Company. At that time, he was working on the construction of a building at the Collins Station Area, Dresden Nuclear Power Plant, which is near Morris, Illinois. He was working on a scaffold at the building when a piece of corrugated material was lifted by the wind and caused plaintiff to fall to the ground. At the time of the incident, Edison was the owner of the building.

In the first count of his complaint, plaintiff alleges that Edison violated the Structural Work Act in that it "wilfully failed to place or operate in a safe, suitable and proper manner said support so as to give proper and adequate protection to the life and limb of any person or persons employed or engaged thereon." In the second count, plaintiff alleges that Edison was guilty of one or more of the following negligent acts or omissions:

(a) Failed to make a reasonable inspection of the premises and the work being done thereon, when the defendants knew or in the exercise of ordinary care should have known, that said inspection was necessary to prevent injury to the plaintiff.

(b) Improperly operated, managed, maintained and controlled the aforesaid premises, so that as a direct and proximate result thereof, the plaintiff was injured.

(c) Failed to provide the plaintiff with a safe place within which to work.

(d) Failed to warn the plaintiff of the dangerous conditions then and there existing, when the defendants knew or in the exercise of ordinary care should have known, that said warning was necessary to prevent injury to the plaintiff.

(e) Failed to provide adequate safeguards to prevent the plaintiff from injury while lawfully upon said premises.

(f) Failed to supervise the work being done on the aforesaid premises.

(g) Carelessly and negligently implemented or executed the designs, preparations or plans for the structure upon or around which workmen, including the plaintiff, David Badorski, would be working.

In its third-party complaint, Edison alleges that any negligence or violation of the Structural Work Act would arise solely from its capacity as an owner in charge of the work for its failure to inspect or adequately inspect the site. Edison alleges that any misconduct on its part was passive in nature. Edison further asserts that Robertson, as the employer and direct supervisor of plaintiff, was guilty of one or more of the following acts of active or primary wrongdoing:

(a) Provided the plaintiff with improper directions and supervision as to the manner in which ...


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