BETH L. WINELAND v. CITY OF CLEVELAND, TENNESSEE ET AL. (Tenn. Ct. App. July 28, 2011)
Beth L. Wineland, the sole plaintiff, sustained serious injuries when the front wheel of her bicycle fell into the open slots of a metal drainage grate ("the subject grate" or "the old style grate") situated near a curb of State Highway 60. The slots on the subject grate run parallel with the direction of traffic. The subject grate is inside the municipal boundaries of the City of Cleveland. The plaintiff made a claim against the State of Tennessee in the Claims Commission and filed this action against the City of Cleveland in the trial court. The claim against the State was consolidated with this action for trial. The plaintiff alleges that the old style grate constitutes a dangerous condition on the highway and that both the City of Cleveland and the State were negligent in maintaining the highway. The trial court determined that neither defendant had a duty to change the grate and dismissed the case. The plaintiff appeals only as to the State. We reverse the judgment and remand for a determination of damages.
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