A lawyer for one of two firms handling a multi-million dollar class action related to crashes on the Red Hill Valley Parkway (RHVP) says his clients are ‘disappointed’ with a judge’s decision in dismiss the complaint.
Robert Hooper of Grosso Hooper says the group will need a few more days to determine if there are grounds for appeal and if there will be one that will be pursued.
“Clearly for potential class members, we are disappointed with the outcome,” Hooper told Global News in a statement.
“Our team is reviewing the judgment to determine if an appeal is warranted. We are meeting next week to make a final decision.
Families of Red Hill Valley Parkway crash victims launch $250 million class action lawsuit against City of Hamilton
Superior Court Judge David L. Edwards denied certification in a Monday decision, saying the application did not meet the threshold to proceed.
He suggested the ongoing legal inquiry, led by Judge Herman Wilton-Siegel, could bolster a future claim by creating more public scrutiny than the class action presented.
“If the allegations against the city are proven to be true, it is indeed a matter of great public concern,” Edwards said in his ruling.
The attempted $250 million class action lawsuit alleging improper design and maintenance of the RHVP has led to numerous accidents since the thoroughfare was opened in 2007.
Two Hamilton law firms, Grosso Hooper and Scarfone Hawkins, represent the families at the forefront of the claim – relatives of Corinne Klassen, a housewife from London, Ont., who was disabled by a accident on the highway in 2007, and of Michael Sholer, who died in an accident in 2017 on the RHVP.
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The claim drew much of its evidence from a 2013 Tradewind scientific report, which analyzed friction levels on the boardwalk and suggested some safety issues with the pavement.
The audit recommended ‘corrective actions’ and an asphalt investigation after friction values were found to be ‘below or well below’ UK safety standards, which were used as a benchmark in the study.
The report was unveiled in 2018 when the City of Hamilton’s new Director of Engineering Services came across the Tradewind study and its recommendations for “further examination of surface, composition and weather resistance. ‘road wear’ and ‘more extensive work’.
Lawyer says Red Hill Valley Parkway’s $250 million class action lawsuit against Hamilton is progressing slowly
The claim alleged three failures by the city related to the construction of the causeway and two related to the failure to disclose the third-party report to the public.
The case is the subject of the Red Hill Valley Parkway Inquiry (RHVPI) – commissioned by the city in February 2019 to answer questions about the Tradewind report – currently in its ninth week of hearings.
City attorney Eli Lederman, in an update from the city’s general issues committee in early April, said the cost of the investigation had ballooned to $13.2 million.
Hamilton’s legal staff have publicly stated that the final cost could reach between $18 million and $20 million when completed.
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