NO WRITTEN NOTICE TO CITY WAS REQUIRED
C. O’Hara fell in a hole while working along on the lawn of a public park situated in the City of Buffalo. When she later filed a personal-injury case, the municipality asked to have the case thrown out (via a motion for summary judgment), because it hadn’t received prior written notice of the condition as required by local law. After the Erie County Supreme Court denied that request, the City appealed to the Appellate Division, Fourth Department, which ended up affirming the denial.
Upon its review of Buffalo’s City Charter § 21-2, the AD4 noted that its language expressly provided that "`[n]o civil action shall be maintained against the city for damage or injuries to person or property sustained in consequence of any street, part or portion of any street including the curb thereof and any encumbrances thereon or attachments thereto, tree, bridge, viaduct, underpass, culvert, parkway or park approach, sidewalk or crosswalk, pedestrian walk or path, or traffic-control sign or signal, being defective, out of repair, unsafe, dangerous or obstructed’ unless defendant received prior written notice of the allegedly dangerous condition.”
Since the accident occurred in an area that wasn’t listed in the Charter, and no advance written notice was thus necessary, the AD4 concluded the City’s motion had been properly denied.
Think the city got buffaloed here?
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