years of the date the cause of action accrued").
It is clear that Puthe had reason to know that he was suffering from some psychological ailment as early 1985. Puthe has stated that it was during his voyage aboard the Exxon Lexington in or about November or December 1985, that he first realized he was not in control of his emotions or his life and that he had a problem (see Plt's Depo. pp. 26-27; Def. Ex. 2 - sailing record). In regard to his 1985 assignment aboard the Exxon Lexington, he recognized that "the stress was too great to handle at the time" (Plt's Depo. pp. 84-85).
Puthe commenced this action on May 29, 1989 claiming that he first learned of his injury in August of 1986. However, the plaintiff stated that nothing occurred during 1986 that contributed toward his cause of action (see Plt's Depo. pp. 107-108). Yet the plaintiff contends that his action is timely because under the discovery rule, a statute of limitations begins to run only when the plaintiff "becomes aware not only of his disease but also of its cause" (see Jones v. Maine Cent. R. Co., 690 F.Supp. 73, 74 [D. Me. 1988]). Thus, because Puthe allegedly did not learn that his psychological problems were caused by his occupation until August, 1986, he contends that the statute of limitations under the FELA and the USLMT would not have expired until August of 1989.
However, even assuming such an application of the discovery rule, the plaintiff's action is still untimely. The record bears out that the plaintiff had reason to know of his psychological problems during his assignment aboard the Exxon Lexington in late 1985. In fact, the record shows' that he attributed such problems to the stress attendant to his sailing duties on the Exxon Lexington (Plt's Depo. pp. 84-85).
Accordingly, even assuming that the plaintiff established a claim under the Jones Act or FELA, such claims would be time-barred by 45 U.S.C. § 56 and 46 U.S.C. § 763(a)
In light of the foregoing, the plaintiff has failed to demonstrate any legally cognizable acts of negligence or damages so as to sustain a cause of action against the defendant.
Furthermore, even assuming the plaintiff has a claim under the Jones Act or FELA, such claim would be barred under the three year statute of limitations set forth in 45 U.S.C. § 56 (FELA) and 46 U.S.C. § 763(a) (USLMT).
Accordingly, the motion of the defendant for summary judgment is granted in its entirety.
The Clerk of the Court is directed to close this case and serve on all parties by regular mail a copy of this decision.
Dated: Uniondale, New York
September 26, 1992
Arthur D. Spatt
United States District Judge
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