In the recent case of Byron v JBG Contractors (NSW) Pty Ltd [2020] NSWSC 1280 , the Supreme Court of NSW assessed damages for private nuisance arising from the release of airborne hydrated lime particles onto the plaintiff’s residential properties from a neighbouring construction site. The issue on appeal was what amount of damages the plaintiffs were entitled to.

The defendant was a demolition and civil works contractor who was conducting works on a construction site on the Princess Highway. The Plaintiff’s properties were located opposite the construction site. Windy conditions occurring during the spreading of hydrated lime over the site resulted in lime particles accumulating on and inside parts of the of the plaintiff’s properties.

The court rejected the plaintiff’s submission that the defendant failed to act upon complaints and had been evasive about the material used on the dust site because in reality, the defendant had accepted responsibility immediately and had engaged cleaners for the affected properties.

This case us a useful example of how claims in private nuisance may arise in relation to construction sites.

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