The Cause and Effect
The poor road conditions can further be exasperated by a dangerous combination of seasonal traffic and other traffic conditions that exist. Changes in weather can cause hazardous road conditions. For example, Florida rain can cause slippery and dangerous roadways along with poor visibility.
Construction zones are another cause of bad road conditions, and often they can cause the road to become uneven, and this is another cause of many road accidents as well.
The Cause of Accidents
Most of these accidents caused by bad road conditions occur because the driver attempts to take the steps to avoid the accident in the first place. Maybe they saw a pothole and tried to avoid it. Some other hazards that can cause accidents include issues with zoning, signage that is perplexing and hard to understand, not enough signage, and sudden driver maneuvers.
Types of Bad Roads
One of the most common bad road conditions you can find almost everywhere are potholes. If the road is missing a significant chunk, this can easily cause an accident to happen. In addition, shoulder drop-offs, oil and chip areas prior to resurfacing, construction work zones, and slick roads are also all contributing factors.
Liability for these Accidents
Roads are maintained by the city, county, and state and each has its own set of maintenance responsibilities when it comes to roadways. While one group might be responsible for filling potholes, you may find that it is another group that paves the road. If you are in an accident due to bad road conditions, the first step is to find which agency is responsible for the conditions.
Once you have determined which agency you need to speak with, you then must prove that it was negligence. Meaning that the agency should have fixed or maintained the road but failed to do so or chose not to do so and the result was an accident.
Many times, you will find that the agency had to cut back their funding for road repair and this means that maintenance is not being done and this is a case in which the agency can be found liable for the negligence.
However, if a tree were to fall in the middle of the road causing an accident, then you most likely won't be able to prove if they knew the tree existed or not and if they knew that it needed to be removed.
You also must prove that it was indeed the road conditions that caused the accident and not something else. Like with many personal injury cases and proving fault, this can be difficult to accomplish at times. You need to collect as much evidence as possible including witnesses, a police report of the accident, photos, and testimony to show proof of the damage that was caused. If not, the agency can easily argue that it was your poor driving or some other condition that caused the accident and not the condition of the road.
Can I Sue?
Most government entities have immunity when it comes to lawsuits like this; however, some can be sued under very specific circumstances. Negligence in properly maintaining a roadway is often considered the exception.
If you have been in an accident due to unsafe road conditions and are unsure of the process or what to do next, contact a knowledgeable and experienced personal injury attorney to help you. They will know who to contact and what needs to be done to get you the compensation you deserve from the accident.