Suit: Median landscaping on Apperson caused crash

Tyler Juranovich, Kokomo Tribune, Ind.
·2 min read

Feb. 15—A recently filed lawsuit against the city of Kokomo and a county resident claims the landscaping in the medians on Apperson Way was one of the causes of a July 2019 vehicle accident.

Nathan Williams, of Howard County, alleges that the negligence of fellow county resident Larry Batt and the city of Kokomo led to a two-vehicle accident at the intersection of Monroe Street and North Apperson Way on July 19, 2019.

According to the suit, Williams was riding his scooter north on North Apperson Way when a vehicle driving eastbound on Monroe Street by Batt pulled into the intersection at the same time as Williams, causing a crash and ""severe and permanent injuries" to Williams.

Batt's view, according to the suit, was obstructed by the landscaping located just south of the intersection. A tree and various shrubbery are located on the median just south of Monroe Street.

The suit lays the blame of the accident on both Batt and the city, noting that the city "allowed the landscaping to obstruct the views at the intersection and for failing to properly design and maintain the intersection in a safe manner, which created a danger for motorists on the roadway."

Williams is suing for an unspecified amount of damages. Neither Batt nor the city have yet to file responses to the complaint.

The lawsuit is the second in a year to claim the city's road diets on Apperson Way have led to a serious vehicle accident.

Indianapolis resident Lucina Eaton sued the city last year after she struck the bump-out at the intersection of Apperson and Monroe Street. Eaton alleges the city should have known the bump-out at the intersection of Apperson and Monroe Street was an issue. Since the accident, the city moved that bump-out two inches in the east to hopefully avoid more vehicles hitting it.

The city has denied Eaton's charges and has since filed a cross-claim lawsuit against E&P Paving, arguing that the company should be held responsible for damages because the road was milled but not yet paved by E&B Paving at the time of the crash.

Tyler Juranovich can be reached at 765-454-8577, by email at tyler.juranovich@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter at @tylerjuranovich