County insurer won’t appeal road salt ruling

Legal review found case dealt with 'nuisance' not 'negligence'

A $107,352 damage ruling against the County of Lambton won’t be appealed by the County’s insurance company.

The decision not to appeal the ruling that favoured the Steadman family, which had claimed damages for the depreciated value of their property and crop losses from 1998 to 2013, was made by Frank Cowan Company.

The insurer, in replying to a request by the Ontario Good Roads Association (OGRA), said the ruling is not legal precedent and was decided in nuisance and not negligence.

The difference in the two is that “nuisance” defence is narrowly defined.

The OGRA is advising municipalities seek to review its practices, including roadside drainage, culverts, road salt concentrations and the use of snow fences as a way to lessen the impact on the environment.

The OGRA is also working with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation to seek ways to amend the Municipal Act in a way that would provide municipalities protection from what it called “these nuisance claims.”

Get the Lambton Shield Daily Brief in your inbox:

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.