Appeals court ruling allows lawsuit against KCRC to move forward

By: 
Dennis Mansfield, Contributing Writer

LANSING – Legal representatives defending the Kalkaska County Road Commission might have lost a battle, although they still haven’t lost the war in an ongoing lawsuit that dates back to an accident in late 2013.

The Michigan Court of Appeals issued a ruling on May 23, stating that the KCRC was not immune from lawsuits in which equipment was potentially operated in a negligent fashion. That will allow a lawsuit filed by Carrie Flanigan to move forward.

“The central issue in this case is whether a county road commission is immune from suit for an accident caused by a county snowplow that is operating on the wrong side of the road,” the ruling by the three-member court stated.

“We conclude that, while the motor vehicle code does authorize a plow truck to be operated in the opposing traffic lane, doing so may nevertheless present a situation in which the plow truck is being negligently operated,” the ruling stated, “and, in such cases, the resulting motor vehicle accident falls outside the scope of governmental immunity.”

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