Previously we reported: County Granted Summary Judgment On Dangerous Condition Of Public Property Claim.
A husband and wife were injured in an auto accident and brought an action against another motorist as well as the county for dangerous condition of public property. The complaint alleged the other driver was unable to see the plaintiffs as they pulled out from one road onto another. The county moved for summary judgment based upon design immunity and the plaintiffs opposed, contending the county disregarded its own methodology regarding sight distance. The trial court granted summary judgment and the appellate court affirmed, stating: “[A] licensed civil and traffic engineer employed by the County approved the Plans prior to construction, that this engineer had the discretionary authority to approve the Plans, and that another licensed engineer employed by the County approved and signed the ‘as built’ plans after construction of the improvements, the County demonstrated the discretionary approval element of its design immunity defense as a matter of law.” (Hampton v. County of San Diego (Cal. App. Fourth Dist., Div. 1; July 26, 2013) 218 Cal.App.4th 286 [160 Cal.Rptr.3d 168].) The recent opinion of the California Supreme Court: The California Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the Court of Appeal which affirmed the trial court’s order granting the City’s motion for summary judgment, stating: “We conclude that the discretionary approval element of [Gov’t Code] section 830.6 does not implicate the question whether the employee who approved the plans was aware of design standards or was aware that the design deviated from those standards. The issue of the adequacy of the deliberative process with respect to design standards may be considered in connection with the court’s determination whether there is substantial evidence that the design was reasonable. In addition, the discretionary approval element does not require the entity to demonstrate in its prima facie case that the employee who had authority to and did approve the plans also had authority to disregard applicable standards.” (Hampton v. County of San Diego (Cal. Sup. Ct.; December 10, 2015) 62 Cal.4th 340 [195 Cal.Rptr.3d 773].) #