Farmers warned over dirt on roads
Posted: November 16, 2015
Posted in: Bicycle Accidents Motorcycle Accidents Road Traffic Accidents
Following an accident earlier this year – which saw a woman receive £100,000 in compensation following a bike accident caused by farm waste on the road – farmers have been reminded of their legal obligation to keep the roads free of mud and waste. The National Farmers Union (NFU) have warned all farmers to pay particular attention to this over the winter months, where wet weather can lead to an increased risk of mud getting onto the roads and highways. A spokesman from the union stated: “As well as being illegal, this is a problem which has led to serious accidents in the past and it is essential that members take steps to minimise its impact.”
Any farmer or vehicle operator who leaves mud or waste on public roads is liable for a range of offences, with primary powers falling under the Highways Act 1980. Section 161 Highways Act 1980 states: “If a person, without lawful authority or excuse, deposits anything whatsoever on a highway in consequence of which a user of the highway is injured or endangered, that person is guilty of an offence.”
Any mud or waste can constitute a public nuisance
Earlier this year a woman suffered severe injuries after her motorbike skidded on mud near her home in Belton, south Yorkshire. 18-year-old Carrie Dickinson skidded on the dirt left by farm vehicles, resulting in her suffering a broken collarbone, bruises, cuts and a severe concussion. She was awarded £100,000 in compensation for her injuries.
The presence of any mud or waste on the road can constitute a public nuisance, and civil action can be taken when it contributes to personal injury, property damage or any loss/inconvenience.
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