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Carroll v. County of L.A.

Court of Appeal of California, Second Appellate District, Division Two

December 30, 1997, Decided

No. B112393.

Opinion

 [*607]  [**505]   NOTT, J. 

This appeal presents the question of whether ] a paved bicycle path qualifies as a "trail" under the immunity provisions of Government Code section 831.4. 1 We hold that it does, and affirm the judgment that was entered in favor of respondent County of Los Angeles (the County) against appellant Colleen Carroll.

FACTS

The South Bay Bicycle Path (the Path) stretches along [***2]  the coast from Santa Monica through Redondo Beach. The Path is 19.2 miles long. It is located mainly on the beach, although at some points it runs adjacent to beachfront homes and sidewalks. The Path is paved, and is wide enough to support two-way traffic, with a yellow stripe down the center as a divider. Although the Path is designated as a "bicycle path," it is also used daily by walkers, joggers, skateboarders, rollerskaters, and rollerbladers.

 [*608]  The subject incident took place on May 17, 1993, at approximately 7:30 p.m. near 1st Street in Manhattan Beach. Appellant was rollerblading where the Path intersects a walkway. She claims that her left rear wheel struck a crack, causing her to fall and fracture her right elbow.

After litigation was commenced, the parties proceeded to nonbinding arbitration, where appellant received an award of $ 19,765.30. The County requested a trial de novo. Just before trial was to start, the County moved for judgment under the provisions of section 831.4, which gives governmental immunity for any injury caused due to the condition of a trail. The trial court granted the motion, setting the stage for this appeal.

DISCUSSION

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60 Cal. App. 4th 606 *; 70 Cal. Rptr. 2d 504 **; 1997 Cal. App. LEXIS 1104 ***; 97 Cal. Daily Op. Service 32; 97 Daily Journal DAR 19

COLLEEN CARROLL, Plaintiff and Appellant, v. COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES, Defendant and Respondent.

Subsequent History:  [***1]  Review Denied March 18, 1998, Reported at: 1998 Cal. LEXIS 1744.

Prior History: APPEAL from a judgment of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County, No. YC019557, Cary H. Nishimoto, Judge.

Disposition: The judgment is affirmed. Respondent is awarded costs on appeal.

CORE TERMS

trail, subdivision, Path, paved, highway, provide access, public entity, easement, bicycle, unpaved

Governments, Public Improvements, General Overview, Torts, Public Entity Liability, Immunities, Transportation Law, Private Vehicles, Bicycles, Local Governments, Claims By & Against, Real Property Law, Limited Use Rights, Easements, Public Easements