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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Neighbors Putting Speed Bumps in Shared Right-of-Way

    I live in a neighborhood of about 15 homes. There are 8 homes before me on our private road (right-of-way). My neighborhood is in Rowan County, NC. The neighbor who lives 3 homes before me on the road has issues with everyone who drives past his home at a rate of more than 5 miles per hour. Their reasons are 1. dust, 2. kids playing, 3. dust.

    They have called the sheriff on my 18 yr old son for "weaving" & driving too fast. I don't know about everyone else's speed, but we generally stick to 10 to 15mph, on a dirt road, you can put a lot of wear on your car going faster than that. However, it is ok for them to tear up and down the road in both directions, doing donuts etc. on 4-wheelers. They also throw leftover food and such into the road, though that is another issue all together.

    This morning though on my way to work at 5:30am when it was still dark I hit a bump in the road, and I hit hard. The bump was not there yesterday, and was followed about 50 ft later by another one, which I discovered were some sort of man made dirt speed bumps.

    I saw the neighbors in the grocery on my way home and asked about them. I was told that if the other neighbors kids and friends driving up and down the road did not slow down, they would remain, and more would come until they were 5 ft apart. The ones there this morning would not have been horrible had I been informed of them, and known they were there so I could have rolled over them. I told them notification would have been nice. I was trying to be nice, and I did not comment on them placing more on the road.

    On my way home, I discovered the 2 bumps from the morning had doubled in size, something they did not tell me in the store, and there was now a ditch between the two bumps. Bump, 5 ft, ditch, 30-40 ft bump. I was a bit irritated by the time I got home and was thankful that my suspension was good, though for who knows how long now. However had I been driving my MR2, I would not have been able to drive over the bumps without dragging the underside of my car, if I made it at all.

    My son got home 2 hours after I did, and informed me there were now 3 monster bumps in the road all spaced about a car length apart, and the ditch was still there. My husband arrived an hour later, and said, no, there are now 4 monster bumps in the road. He drives a fairly large work truck, stocked full of tools, and supplies, and barely made it over one of the bumps, because of the weight of the truck. And the drop down in like driving off a 1 ft curb. BAM! He feels like he is going to end up breaking some of the porcelain fixtures he has to carry, not to mention doing damage to our vehicles, and not even being able to drive one of the vehicles out. My son's girlfriend who stays with us on weekends, is not even going to be able to drive her car in to the house this weekend. My daughters friends with lower cars are not going to be able to get in our out. Then there are the other neighbors with lower cars then my and my son's jeeps.

    Can this guy do this? All of us have property that is subject to the easement. Each person on the road from beginning to end with the exception of the last person on the road, have allowed easements for the people living on the road after us for access and utilities. In an essence it is a private road that we all own, and had all been caring for, but now I don't know what to do. I mean, I knew the family were jerks, but come on. It is ridiculous. You can't force people to crawl at 5mph or less, and living on a dirt road you should expect dirt and dust, or don't live on one. As for the kids, 10-15mph is not too fast, especially when your playing with 4-wheelers going much faster than that yourselves, and kids have no place playing in the road to begin with.

    I don't know what I am going to find when I head out to work in the morning. I fear it is going to be a mess.

    Any help or info would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,376

    Default Re: Easement Issue, Bad Neighbors

    What are the written terms of the road easement?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Easement Issue, Bad Neighbors

    Quote Quoting LandSurveyor
    View Post
    What are the written terms of the road easement?
    We are to allow for people to get to and from their homes, utilities, etc. I remember when the newest person on the road was buying his house, we all had to sign for him to be allowed access. It was to allow for entry and exit, emergency vehicles, and utilities. Other than that, I'm not sure.

    When I bought my land, the easement was already there and passed from the previous owners to me 10 yrs ago. No one had to sign for me. It was in place and until this year, there had been no problems.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    28,124

    Default Re: Easement Issue, Bad Neighbors

    who is the servient tenant. in other words, who owns the land the road is on?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Easement Issue, Bad Neighbors

    We all do. We all own the land in the road in front of our homes. Some of us the whole road in front of our homes, some of us only to the center of the road in front of our homes. I suppose this family doing this owns either all of the land in the road in front of his home or to the halfway point.

    My husband just came home. He said he tried to talk to them, and got no where. They are talking about putting some in front of another neighbors, and if we don't like it he will just pull out his tractor and tear up the whole road. I don't know what to do.

    We own a boat, and this will probably make it hard to take out, could even damage it if we try. Like I said, I also have a vehicle that i can't drive in and out anymore either.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Oregon now, but will probably end up back in Nevada someday
    Posts
    241

    Default Re: Easement Issue, Bad Neighbors

    It was to allow for entry and exit, emergency vehicles, and utilities.
    This might be your solution. Call the local police department, fire department, and ambulance service and advice them of the condition of the road. (Don't try to get them to solve the neighbor dispute!) Simply advise them you are concerned that they would not be able to get to your house (or neighbors') in case of an emergency.

    I can't guarantee this will help, but I experienced a similar problem and it was resolved by the fire chief. Well, the road issue was solved by him...the crappy neighbor issue continued, but that's a whole different story.

    Good Luck!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    28,124

    Default Re: Easement Issue, Bad Neighbors

    well, the fact this is a civil matter (as opposed to criminal, not uncivil which it apparently already is), it sounds like you need to speak with an attorney. I would suggest all the homeowners that are affected by this and not happy with it to pool their resources. This way it doesn't cost any one person all of the money and you don't end up with 12 lawyers all trying to do the same thing.


    but, before you do that, if he is damaging the road where anybody other than he is the servient tenant (and the I don't want him to do it perspective as well) , they need to do one of two things: send him a cease and desist order and demand the lane be restored or simply call the police and report him for damaging the property.


    if he isn't tearing up anybody's land but his own, I suggest the lawyer route.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    North East
    Posts
    2,058

    Default Re: Neighbors Putting Speed Bumps in Shared Right-of-Way

    If the township hadn't put the speed bumps there legally and your neighbors did illegally, then I would just go out there with a shovel and knock then down.

    Or I would use reverse sociology and add dirt and rocks to make the speed bumps larger...

  9. #9

    Default Re: Neighbors Putting Speed Bumps in Shared Right-of-Way

    I don't care what the easement says, no road and utilities easement would contemplate allowing one of the easement holders to make speed bumps in an unworkmanlike manner. A couple of hicks piling up dirt and making ditches will be easily overcome with an attorney. Are you seriously the only one having a problem, with the amount of residences, your other neighbors probably are mad too.

    If they are digging ditches over 12" and this easement also has utilities they are in violation of your states utility locate law (one-call). Just call the police and all the utilities. Having law enforement physically drive down the road will be beneficial.

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