[Adopted 2-14-1978 by L.L. No. 1-1978]
This article shall be cited and may be referred to hereinafter as the "Local Law for Regulation of Open Pits."
It is declared to be the purpose of this article to prevent and deter injury to persons or property within the Town of Southeast as the same may be caused or created as the result of the digging, excavating or otherwise opening of test pits, test holes, trenches and other drainage and/or testing devices. It is recognized that the same, while necessary to the proper and safe development of real property, when improperly maintained, constructed or protected, present a very serious hazard to the health and safety of those persons living, working or being in the vicinity thereof. It is, therefore, the intent of the Town of Southeast to ensure the reasonable safety of its residents by requiring protective devices and timely removal for such excavations.
This article shall apply to all areas within the Town of Southeast, Putnam County, New York, excepting therefrom the territorial limits of the Village of Brewster, and shall further apply to present any future excavations within said Town.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- CONTROLLED EXCAVATION
- Includes any test pit, test hole, trench, swale or other hole or ditch having a diameter or width in excess of 18 inches and a depth of more than 12 inches from the surface level of the ground measured at its lowest point within a radius of three feet from the center line of the excavation or involving standing water more than six inches deep.
- ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
- Includes the Building Inspector of the Town of Southeast or any other official designated by the Town Board.
- Any person, corporation, individual, partnership, association or other entity.
It shall be unlawful to construct a controlled excavation within the Town of Southeast without first having obtained therefor from the Building Inspector a written consent for the same. Such consent shall be in a form approved by the Town Board and shall state the following information:
[Amended 6-16-1988 by L.L. No. 5-1988]
The full name and address of the owner or owners of the property.
The street address, if any, of the property.
A statement of consent by the owner of the property for said excavation.
The date when it is anticipated that said excavation shall commence.
The date when it is anticipated the same shall be restored to its original condition.
The written consent shall have affixed thereto the signature of the Building Inspector upon his approval.
Any applicant for the aforesaid consent shall furnish to the Building Inspector two copies of a map, survey or other approved description having located thereon the exact location of the proposed controlled excavation, the boundary lines of the applicant's property and the names and addresses of all surrounding property owners whose property abuts that of the applicant or abuts any roadway immediately opposite and adjacent to the property of the applicant.
No controlled excavation and no written consent therefor shall be allowed so as to exist unprotected for a period of more than 48 hours from the commencement of the initial excavation work.
Any controlled excavation must be suitably protected so as to ensure the safety of all who may reasonably come in contact therewith; but in no event shall any such controlled excavation be constructed and maintained for a period in excess of 48 hours unless one or more of the following protective devices be installed around such excavation or the property upon which the excavation is being made:
A wooden or wire mesh fence of not less than four feet in height, or other suitable device, surrounding and enclosing the entire property or the work area, designed for and capable of preventing and restraining intruders. If said fence shall be of wooden construction, each fencing board shall be separated by not more than seven inches; and if said fence is of wire-mesh construction, the mesh shall not be greater than six inches by six inches. No fence shall be so located as to obstruct visibility at the access drive. Gates shall be securely locked at all times when the project is not in operation. It shall be the responsibility and liability of the applicant to ensure effectiveness of such fence and maintenance thereof.
A cover, cap or other capping device placed upon all circular excavations, designed to withstand weight in excess of 300 pounds per square foot and affixed so as to prevent unauthorized removal. It shall be the responsibility and liability of the applicant to ensure the effectiveness of such cover or cap.
Any such other device suitably adapted to the purposes of this article and approved by the Building Inspector.
The adoption of this article shall not be deemed to impose upon the Town of Southeast any responsibility or liability for negligence, injury or the like caused to any person or property as a result of the lack of enforcement thereof; nor shall the written consent and/or approval of the Building Inspector be deemed a representation on the part of the Town of Southeast, or the agents and employees thereof, of the suitability, acceptability or effectiveness of any devices used in the purpose of preventing injury.
[Amended 6-16-1988 by L.L. No. 5-1988]
Any person who violates or causes the violation of any provision of this article shall be punishable by a fine not of not more than $250 or imprisonment for a period not to exceed 15 days, or both, for each violation. A continued violation of this article shall constitute a separate additional violation for each week of continuance.