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Corps Of Engineers Not Liable For Levee Failure

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - The levees in the Trinity River and area lakes are meant to prevent flooding. But if one were to fail, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, responsible for building and maintaining the levees, would not be liable for their own mistakes.

The decision comes from the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in a case involving Hurricane Katrina victims. But it would also apply to levees in Dallas. If those levees should fail, no one would be able to sue the Corps for any responsibility they might have for the failure.

The revelation has some city leaders concerned. Dallas City Council member Scott Griggs says the Corps can vouch for the safety of the levees. But if it is wrong, it will not be the one paying the price. He says the ruling leaves him uneasy and expects city leaders will double and triple check any recommendations it receives from the Corps.

“It erodes the public’s confidence. I think part of having confidence in a government organization is to know they’re responsible and accountable. So, this decision erodes the trust.”

The Corps released a statement saying it has received the ruling and is still reviewing it. It directed all question to the Department of Justice.