G.R. No. 120553, 17 June 1997, 273 SCRA 562


Acuesta was riding in his easy rider bicycle along the Gomez Street of Calbayog City;Philtranco bus driven by Manilhig was being pushed by some persons in order to start itsengine; the Magsaysay Blvd. runs perpendicular to Gomez St. and the said Philtranco buswas heading in the general direction of the said Gomez St.; as the bus was pushed, itsengine started thereby the bus continued on its running motion and it occurred at the timewhen Acuesta who was still riding on his bicycle was directly in front of the said bus; thebus bumped on Acuesta who, as a result thereof fell and, thereafter, was run over by thesaid bus; Acuesta died.


1. WON Art. 2180, instead of Art. 2194, is applicable;
2. WON award of damages bythe trial court to the heirs of Acuesta is excessive


1. This is action for damages based on quasi-delict under Article 2176 and 2180 of the Civil Code against Manilhig and his employer, Philtranco, respectively. The liability of the registered owner of a public service vehicle, like Philtranco, for damages arising from the tortious acts of the driver is primary, direct, and joint and several or solidary with the driver (Legal basis: Art. 2194 which provides: “The responsibility of two or more persons who are liable for a quasi-delict is solidary.”
Philtranco’s only recourse if the judgment for damages is satisfied by it is to recover what it has paid from its employee who committed the fault or negligence which gave rise to the action based on quasi-delict (Legal basis: Art. 2181: “Whoever pays for the damage caused by his dependents or employees may recover from the latter what he has paid or delivered in satisfaction of the claim.”

2. Yes. The trial court erroneously fixed the “death indemnity” at 200,000. Art. 2206provides the basis for the computation of death indemnity which is fixed by current jurisprudence at 50,000.

*Case digest by Lindsay Arra Calapiz, LLB-IV, Andres Bonifacio Law School, SY 2018-2019