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Title: Tort liability for failure to warn of natural hazards - a threat to community resilience
Contributor(s): Eburn, Michael Ernest (author)
Publication Date: 2007
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Abstract: It has been argued that imposing liability on authorities for failure to adequately prepare or warn a community of impending disaster will encourage authorities to ensure that relevant, adequate and timely warnings are given to communities, and to hold them accountable if they are not. On the other hand, fear of legal liability may well encourage authorities to 'over warn' or practice 'defensive warning' (ie give too many warnings to ensure that they can not be criticized for failing to predict an adverse event) or fail to issue warnings at all. This paper will consider, in the Australian context, the potential liability of those involved in communicating risk information and warnings to the community. The paper will examine the potential liability for failure to warn of natural hazards as well as arguments for and against imposing liability in tort for any alleged failure. It will be argued that although accountability mechanisms are important, reliance on tort (or fault based litigation) is not the most appropriate means to achieve that end.
Publication Type: Conference Publication
Conference Name: 1st Australasian Natural Hazards Emergency Management Conference: from warnings to response and recovery, Brisbane, Australia, 1-5 July 2007
Source of Publication: Conference Proceedings: 1st Australasian Natural Hazards Management Conference: from warnings to response and recovery
Publisher: GNS Science
Place of Publication: Brisbane, Australia
ISSN: 1177-2441
Field of Research (FOR): 180126 Tort Law
HERDC Category Description: E2 Non-Refereed Scholarly Conference Publication
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