Drain

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Drain

A trench or ditch to convey water from wet land; a channel through which water may flow off. The word has no technical legal meaning. Any hollow space in the ground, natural or artificial, where water is collected and passes off, is a ditch or drain.

Also, sometimes, the Easement or servitude (acquired by grant or prescription) that consists of the right to drain water through another's land.

A number of states have drainage statutes in order to protect the welfare of the public. Such statutes provide for the construction of drains in areas that are swampy, marshy, or overflowed past their natural boundaries. Also contained in drainage statutes are provisions that regulate the creation and organization of drainage districts. The state legislature has the discretion to decide which lands will be included within a particular drainage district. For example, such a district might include territory of a city or village or property in two or more counties.

The specific plan for the construction of a drain is within the discretion of local authorities as modified by limitations or restrictions set forth by state drainage statutes. Only land that will be benefited through drainage improvements should properly be included within a drainage district.

In certain instances, liability has been extended to drainage districts that have failed to maintain existing drains. In order to remedy this situation, in some cases, landowners are given a certain portion of a drain to clean out and maintain in proper repair. Regardless of whether or not a landowner is specifically given the responsibility for maintenance, a landowner may only close or obstruct a drain with his or her neighbors' consent. If the land of an individual is injured because a public drain is being obstructed by a neighbor, then the person can bring suit for the damage resulting therefrom.

Subject to limitations imposed by the U.S. Constitution, a state legislature has the power to authorize drainage districts to prescribe special assessments to cover the cost of drainage improvements. Generally, only those lands included within a particular district are subject to such assessment. In certain states, school lands are exempted from assessments that drainage districts levy. Assessment review boards frequently entertain objections to drainage assessments; however, if no such board exists, assessments are subject to judicial reviews in the courts. A property owner can, therefore, go to court to challenge what he or she believes to be an unjust drainage assessment against his or her land.

See: consume, decrease, decrement, deplete, diminish, dissipate, eliminate, exhaust, expense, exude, outflow, outpour, remove, sacrifice, spend, tax

DRAIN. Conveying the water from one place to another, for the purpose of drying the former
     2. The right of draining water through another map's land. This is an easement or servitude acquired by grant or prescription. Vide 3 Kent, Com. 436 7 Mann. & Gr. 354; Jus aguaeductus; Rain water; Stillicidium.

References in classic literature ?
But it does seem a queer thing," he added, with a bitter smile, "that I who have a fair claim to nigh upon half a million of money should spend the first half of my life building a breakwater in the Andamans, and am like to spend the other half digging drains at Dartmoor.
fortifications, any more than they are the ancient beds of dried-up rivers; for, on one side, the waters, so slight on the moon's surface, could never have worn such drains for themselves; and, on the other, they often cross craters of great elevation.
The real grandeur, however, of an immense river like this, is derived from reflecting how important a means of communication and commerce it forms between one nation and another; to what a distance it travels, and from how vast a territory it drains the great body of fresh water which flows past your feet.
The surface of the soil thus held in conjoint ownership was hard and carefully swept, but intersected by open drains.
Where I have but sipped and tasted, he drains the cup to the dregs; and if ever for a moment I have sought to drown the voice of reflection in madness and folly, or if I have wasted too much of my time and talents among reckless and dissipated companions, God knows I would gladly renounce them entirely and for ever, if I had but half the blessings that man so thanklessly casts behind his back - but half the inducements to virtue and domestic, orderly habits that he despises - but such a home, and such a partner to share it
They stopped up the ends of certain drains in the barn, into the other openings of which ferrets were inserted, and then stood silently aloof, with uplifted stakes in their hands, and an anxious little terrier (Mr.
Do you know how drains are made below the streets, and wherein these human sewers differ, except in being always stagnant?
Gutters and pipes had burst, drains had overflowed, and streets were under water.
Now, I knew that them two houses in Lauriston Gardens was empty on account of him that owns them who won't have the drains seed to, though the very last tenant what lived in one of them died o' typhoid fever.
Well, sir, now you mention it, I think the drain does sometimes send back a smell; there may be something wrong, sir.
Twas ruled that he who quaffed no fancy's bowl Should drain the "Golden Valley"* cups of wine.
I should have snatched at every opportunity to drop a tear into my glass and then to drain it to all that is "sublime and beautiful.