Negligent Road Maintenance

Park authorities are usually held as political subdivisions of the state. More often than not, there will be a finding of grant of immunity under the Political Subdivision Tort Liability Act. Ordinarily, the statutory exceptions of defenses are limited against park authorities where negligent maintenance of roads is alleged.

Study the provisions at RC 2744.02 (A) (1), (B), 2744.03. As always, the notice requirement is a high bar if there was failure to remove obstructions from the public road.
With the prior version of the Political Subdivision Tort Liability Act, the political subdivision must have had either actual or constructive knowledge of the nuisance. The knowledge element must be struck head-on, and the experts must be prepared to address the specific danger on the road, before liability can be imposed.

If the argument is to be one of “constructive knowledge,” the nuisance must be shown to have existed in such a manner that it could or should have been discovered. Additionally, the defect must have existed for a sufficient length of time to have been discovered. In accordance with the 2002 amendment at RC 2744.02 (B) (3), the discovery must have created a reasonable apprehension of the potential danger.