OPINION ISSUED FEBRUARY 13, 1986
MINE SAFETY APPLIANCES COMPANY
DEPARTMENT OF HIGHWAYS
William Blackwell, Service Representative, for claimant.
Andrew Lopez, Attorney at Law, for respondent.
On April 11, 1985, the claimant's Service Representative was
1985 Chevrolet Astro
Van on Route 161, McDowell County, when the vehicle struck two
Representative was proceeding from Pageton toward Thorpe to service
mines of U. S. Steel.
The van is titled in the name of Leaseway Corporation which leases
van to the claimant.
Claimant's Service Representative was unable to produce the lease
agreement. The vehicle
sustained damage to the tires and wheels in the amount of $209.90.
Representative estimated the larger hole to be 28 inches long and
smaller hole to be 16
inches long. He testified that he judged the two holes to be four
wide and eight inches
deep. He did not know how long the potholes had been in existence.
No evidence was introduced at the hearing to establish that the
respondent was aware of, or
had any knowledge of, the existence of these two potholes. This
has consistently held that
the State is not an insurer of the safety of motorists using its
highways; thus, as there was no
showing of negligence on the part of the respondent, the Court