Herbert H. Henderson, Attorney at Law, for claimants.
Nancy J. Aliff, Attorney at Law, for respondent.


Claimant Opal M. Brown purchased approximately 15 acres of land with a
house and a barn
on Turkey Camp Road, also known as Route 21/2, Wayne County, in 1973,
for $14,000.00.
The property lies on both sides of Turkey Camp Road which runs along the
base of a hill. She
testifies that in 1979 there was a small slip on her property on the
south side of the hill. Prior to
the first landslide, the claimants had not experienced any problem with
flooding. She contact
respondent repeatedly, but no efforts were made by respondent to
alleviate the problem. In
1979, respondent removed the small slip. This action precipitated a
second larger slip.

Claimant testified that she had signed an easement with respondent for
the placement of a drain
on her bottom land. The drain was never placed. At the time of the
second slip, the water ran
across the road and into her bottom land. This area has become a "mud
hole" when it rains now,
according to claimant Opal M. Brown.

The claimants used the acreage in question for a hay crop which they
harvested about two or
three times during the summer and fall seasons. Due to the flow of water
onto the property, the
hay crop does not grow as well as prior to the water problems. Claimants
allege a loss resulting
from the poor hay crop.

Randy Fry, a registered engineer and the County Surveyor of Wayne
County, testified that he
surveyed this property in September, 1982 and again in June, 1987.
Claimants' property lies on
both sides of Turkey Camp Road. The land on the northerly side of the
road is higher in
elevation than the road. The land on the southerly side of the road is
lower in elevation that the
elevation of the road. He assumed that the right-of-way was 30 feet to
begin with, 15 feet on
each side of the center line. The center line had shifted the entire
right-of-way width, and the
travel portion of the highway is still within the original 30 feet. From
his survey, he determined
that 4/100 of an acre of claimant's land has been affected by the water

Neighbors gave accounts of the work done by respondent. There was
agreement among the
witnesses that respondent came in with equipment and scraped out the
slip in 1979. One
individual testified that after the removal of the slip, respondent did
not shore it up. There was no
evidence indicating that respondent cause the first slip.

There was conflicting evidence concerning the worth of claimants'
property. One neighbor
stated that bottom land in Wayne Count is generally appraised at $500.00
an acre. Another
individual stated that property in this area sells for $4,000.00 -
$5,000.00 per acre for bottom
land. A third individual testified that his 95 acres of property in the
vicinity of claimants' property
was appraised for $25,000.00.

Respondent's witnesses included Charles O. Adkins, a surveyor for
respondent; Ivan B.
Browning, Assistant District Engineer in charge of maintenance with
respondent; and Gary
Robert Cooper, a geotechnical engineer with respondent.

Mr. Adkins surveyed Local Service Route 21/2 in the vicinity of the
claimants' property. He
stated that the right-of-way at that location is 30 feet. He measured
the distance between the
edge of Turkey Camp Road through the bottom land to Turkey Camp Creek.
It is 122 1/2 feet
to the water. The travel portion of the roadway at the slide location is
14 feet. He stated that
there is a super elevation around the slip area. "It's basically a
little dip." He agreed that there is
presently a slip at the location, and it is impeding the flow of water
and doing damage to the
Browns' property.

Mr. Browning stated that he determined the right-of-way was 30 feet at
the location in
question. He stated that Turkey Camp Road was taken into the system in
1932. He examined
the property in May, 1986, and the slide was not extending onto the
travel portion of Turkey
Camp Road.

Mr. Cooper testified that he observed the slide which had occurred on
Mrs. Brown's property
in April, 1986, and in June, 1987. The slide along Turkey Camp Road
extended approximately
125 feet along the side of the road.

After examining all of the evidence submitted in the claim, the Court
has determined that
claimants' property is inn a slide-prone area. The measures taken by
respondent, in attempting to
rectify the initial slide have resulted in excess water flowing onto
claimants' property. The Court
is of the opinion that claimants are entitled to recover for the loss of
use of their property based
upon the value of the land. The Court has reviewed the evidence with
respect to the appraisals
rendered by the witnesses. The Court, therefore, makes an award of
$263.16 to the claimants.

Award of $263.16.