2010 Pennsylvania Code
Title 42 - JUDICIARY AND JUDICIAL PROCEDURE
Chapter 85 - Matters Affecting Government Units
8542 - Exceptions to governmental immunity. OFFICIAL IMMUNITY

     § 8542.  Exceptions to governmental immunity.
        (a)  Liability imposed.--A local agency shall be liable for
     damages on account of an injury to a person or property within
     the limits set forth in this subchapter if both of the following
     conditions are satisfied and the injury occurs as a result of
     one of the acts set forth in subsection (b):
            (1)  The damages would be recoverable under common law or
        a statute creating a cause of action if the injury were
        caused by a person not having available a defense under
        section 8541 (relating to governmental immunity generally) or
        section 8546 (relating to defense of official immunity); and
            (2)  The injury was caused by the negligent acts of the
        local agency or an employee thereof acting within the scope
        of his office or duties with respect to one of the categories
        listed in subsection (b). As used in this paragraph,
        "negligent acts" shall not include acts or conduct which
        constitutes a crime, actual fraud, actual malice or willful
        misconduct.
        (b)  Acts which may impose liability.--The following acts by
     a local agency or any of its employees may result in the
     imposition of liability on a local agency:
            (1)  Vehicle liability.--The operation of any motor
        vehicle in the possession or control of the local agency,
        provided that the local agency shall not be liable to any
        plaintiff that claims liability under this subsection if the
        plaintiff was, during the course of the alleged negligence,
        in flight or fleeing apprehension or resisting arrest by a
        police officer or knowingly aided a group, one or more of
        whose members were in flight or fleeing apprehension or
        resisting arrest by a police officer. As used in this
        paragraph, "motor vehicle" means any vehicle which is self-
        propelled and any attachment thereto, including vehicles
        operated by rail, through water or in the air.
            (2)  Care, custody or control of personal property.--The
        care, custody or control of personal property of others in
        the possession or control of the local agency. The only
        losses for which damages shall be recoverable under this
        paragraph are those property losses suffered with respect to
        the personal property in the possession or control of the
        local agency.
            (3)  Real property.--The care, custody or control of real
        property in the possession of the local agency, except that
        the local agency shall not be liable for damages on account
        of any injury sustained by a person intentionally trespassing
        on real property in the possession of the local agency. As
        used in this paragraph, "real property" shall not include:
                (i)  trees, traffic signs, lights and other traffic
            controls, street lights and street lighting systems;
                (ii)  facilities of steam, sewer, water, gas and
            electric systems owned by the local agency and located
            within rights-of-way;
                (iii)  streets; or
                (iv)  sidewalks.
            (4)  Trees, traffic controls and street lighting.--A
        dangerous condition of trees, traffic signs, lights or other
        traffic controls, street lights or street lighting systems
        under the care, custody or control of the local agency,
        except that the claimant to recover must establish that the
        dangerous condition created a reasonably foreseeable risk of
        the kind of injury which was incurred and that the local
        agency had actual notice or could reasonably be charged with
        notice under the circumstances of the dangerous condition at
        a sufficient time prior to the event to have taken measures
        to protect against the dangerous condition.
            (5)  Utility service facilities.--A dangerous condition
        of the facilities of steam, sewer, water, gas or electric
        systems owned by the local agency and located within rights-
        of-way, except that the claimant to recover must establish
        that the dangerous condition created a reasonably foreseeable
        risk of the kind of injury which was incurred and that the
        local agency had actual notice or could reasonably be charged
        with notice under the circumstances of the dangerous
        condition at a sufficient time prior to the event to have
        taken measures to protect against the dangerous condition.
            (6)  Streets.--
                (i)  A dangerous condition of streets owned by the
            local agency, except that the claimant to recover must
            establish that the dangerous condition created a
            reasonably foreseeable risk of the kind of injury which
            was incurred and that the local agency had actual notice
            or could reasonably be charged with notice under the
            circumstances of the dangerous condition at a sufficient
            time prior to the event to have taken measures to protect
            against the dangerous condition.
                (ii)  A dangerous condition of streets owned or under
            the jurisdiction of Commonwealth agencies, if all of the
            following conditions are met:
                    (A)  The local agency has entered into a written
                contract with a Commonwealth agency for the
                maintenance and repair by the local agency of such
                streets and the contract either:
                        (I)  had not expired or been otherwise
                    terminated prior to the occurrence of the injury;
                    or
                        (II)  if expired, contained a provision that
                    expressly established local agency responsibility
                    beyond the term of the contract for injuries
                    arising out of the local agency's work.
                    (B)  The injury and dangerous condition were
                directly caused by the negligent performance of its
                duties under such contract.
                    (C)  The claimant must establish that the
                dangerous condition created a reasonably foreseeable
                risk of the kind of injury which was incurred and
                that the local agency had actual notice or could
                reasonably be charged with notice under the
                circumstances of the dangerous condition at a
                sufficient time prior to the event to have taken
                measures to protect against the dangerous condition.
            (7)  Sidewalks.--A dangerous condition of sidewalks
        within the rights-of-way of streets owned by the local
        agency, except that the claimant to recover must establish
        that the dangerous condition created a reasonably foreseeable
        risk of the kind of injury which was incurred and that the
        local agency had actual notice or could reasonably be charged
        with notice under the circumstances of the dangerous
        condition at a sufficient time prior to the event to have
        taken measures to protect against the dangerous condition.
        When a local agency is liable for damages under this
        paragraph by reason of its power and authority to require
        installation and repair of sidewalks under the care, custody
        and control of other persons, the local agency shall be
        secondarily liable only and such other persons shall be
        primarily liable.
            (8)  Care, custody or control of animals.--The care,
        custody or control of animals in the possession or control of
        a local agency, including but not limited to police dogs and
        horses. Damages shall not be recoverable under this paragraph
        on account of any injury caused by wild animals, including
        but not limited to bears and deer, except as otherwise
        provided by statute.
        (c)  Limited definition.--As used in this section the amount
     of time reasonably required to take protective measures,
     including inspections required by law, shall be determined with
     reference to the actual equipment, personnel and facilities
     available to the local agency and the competing demands
     therefor.
        (d)  Evidence.--Whenever any plaintiff claims liability under
     subsection (b)(1), evidence is admissible to demonstrate that
     the plaintiff, at any time during the course of the alleged
     negligence, was engaged or participating in willful misconduct,
     including, but not limited to, the illegal possession of
     controlled substances, firearms or ammunition.
     (June 10, 1982, P.L.452, No.132, eff. imd.; July 6, 1995,
     P.L.290, No.43, eff. 60 days)

        1995 Amendment.  Act 43 amended subsec. (b)(1) and added
     subsec. (d). Section 2 of Act 43 provided that Act 43 shall
     apply to a cause of action that accrues on or after the
     effective date of Act 43.
        1982 Amendment.  Act 132 amended subsec. (b)(6).
        Cross References.  Section 8542 is referred to in section
     8557 of this title.

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