C. Safety of Passengers Duty to observe utmost diligence A common carrier is bound to carry the passengers safely as far as human care and foresight can provide, using the utmost diligence of very cautious person with due regard for all circumstances. (Article 1755, NCC) The extra ordinary diligence required of common carriers is calculated to protect the passengers from the tragic mishaps that frequently occur in connection with rapid modern transportation. The high standard of care is imperatively demanded by the precariousness of human life and by the consideration that every person must in every way be safeguarded against all injuries. The principles governing the liability of a common carrier are: 1. The liability of a carrier is Contractual and arises out of breach of its obligation 2. A carrier is obliged to carry passengers with Utmost diligence of a very cautious person 3. A carrier is Presumed to be at fault 4. A carrier is Not an insurer against all risk of travel (Isaac vs A.L. Ammen Transportation, G.R. No. L-9671, August 23, 1957) The contract of carriage is 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 a very cautious person, with due regard for all circumstances. If the cause of non- fulfillment of the contract is due to a fortuitous event, it has to be the sole and only cause. (PAL vs CA, G.R. No. L-82619, September 15, 189)) Valid Stipulations (Carriage of Passengers) Stipulation limiting liability when a passenger is carried gratuitously, but not for willful acts or gross negligence. (Reduction of degree of diligence to ordinary diligence, provided it be. (Article 1758, NCC) 1. An agreement limiting the common carrier’s liability for delay on account of strikes or riots. 2. A stipulation that the common carrier’s liability is limited to the value of the goods appearing in the bill of lading unless the shipper or owner declares a greater value. (Edgar Cokationg Shipping Lines vs UCPB Gen. Insurance Co. Inc, G.R. No. 146018. June 25, 2003) 3. A contract fixing the sum that may be recovered by the owner or shipper of the lost, destruction or deterioration of the goods, if it is reasonable and just under the circumstances and has been fairly and freely agreed upon. (Article 1748, NCC) 4. Stipulation limiting liability when a passenger is carried gratuitously, but not for willful acts or gross negligence. Reduction of fare does not justify any limitation of liability. (Article 1758, NCC) 1. Void Stipulations (Carriage of Passengers) 1. Absolutely exempting the common carrier from liability from the passenger's death or injuries; 2. Lessening the extraordinary diligence required by law to the diligence of a good father of a family; 3.
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