Injuries Caused by Road Defects
Most car accidents can be attributed to reckless or negligent drivers whose failure to safely operate their vehicles causes collisions. However, a surprising number of accidents are not the result of a driver’s negligence, but of defects in the road itself. Fortunately, it is still possible for those who are injured in these types of accidents to recover damages for their losses, so if you were injured in a collision that was caused by a road defect, it is critical to speak with an experienced auto accident attorney who can help you file a claim against the at-fault party.
Common Road Defects
We’ve all been forced to drive over or around an annoying pothole in the road, and while it is true that this is one of the most common types of road defects, the reality is that it is far from being the only one. In fact, there are a variety of defects that many of us regularly encounter when on the road, many of which have the potential to cause serious injuries, such as:
- Uneven pavement;
- Missing barriers or guardrails;
- Road debris;
- Overgrown vegetation;
- Inadequate lighting;
- Improperly placed signs;
- Missing or defective traffic lights; and
- Dangerous or missing shoulders.
Any one of these defects could cause a vehicle to crash. For instance, a deep pothole can cause a driver to lose control of the vehicle and swerve into oncoming traffic, while a missing stop sign could result in two or more vehicles colliding in an intersection. Similarly, inadequate shoulders can cause vehicles to pull to the side and in some cases, to roll over.
Filing a Claim
One of the most important components in these types of cases is to identify the party who was responsible for the road defect in question. In some cases, government agencies that are in charge of maintaining the roads are at fault for accidents resulting from road defects, while in others, a construction company that left debris on the road could be held liable for damages. Alternatively, a company hired by a municipal government that failed to repair potholes as required under their contract could be required to compensate any parties who were injured as a result.
The identity of the party who is found to be responsible for the accident will have an important impact on how a case will proceed. For instance, if a government agency is responsible for an accident, the injured party is required to file a notice with that agency within three years of the accident, after which, the at-fault agency has 180 days to conduct an investigation. Only once this deadline has passed can the injured party pursue compensation by filing a claim in court. If the at-fault entity was a third party contractor, on the other hand, no such notice requirements are required.
Call Our Office Today
To speak with one of the dedicated Florida auto accident attorneys at Boone & Davis about recovering damages for your own accident, please call 954-566-9919, or send us an online message today.