Every summer, warm weather prompts millions to flock to bodies of water. While sunbathers likely give little thought to the source of water in which they frolic, design professionals and builders of public and private projects must pay careful attention to how construction will affect stormwater that eventually finds its way into lakes and oceans. Stormwater runoff is rain or melted snow that runs across, rather than seeps into, the ground. Runoff can cause severe damage. Without any type of treatment, runoff also pollutes tributaries and major waterways. Improper design, faulty construction or lack of maintenance of stormwater management systems can create professional exposure to unexpected avenues of liability.
Wendy Testa focuses her legal practice on insurance coverage and defense litigation, particularly in the areas of professional liability; construction, premises and automobile liability; product liability; contractual disputes; and employment.
With the continuous shift in the construction industry toward green and sustainable design, becoming green-accredited is a great marketing tool for any business. However, programs such as LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and green design accreditations such as GRP (Green Roof Professionals) are changing the standard of care for design professionals.
Superstorms such as Sandy and Irene impacted the daily lives of the people who lived through them and the destruction of property totaled in the billions of dollars. Today, design professionals are faced with a new concern arising from these superstorms: whether to provide voluntarily professional services in aid for rebuilding efforts.