It is common for car accidents to occur as a result of driver error or vehicle malfunctions, but some accidents involve the road itself. Improving road infrastructure has been an ongoing goal for many state governments. The need for upkeep and repairs of our roadways has far-reaching effects. Besides being responsible for significant repair costs to car owners, when our roads are not maintained properly, they can become dangerous for travelers.
Government roadway officials, as well as private property owners, have a duty to maintain a safe driving environment for those who make use of the roads under their supervision. From highly traveled freeways and bridges to busy city streets and business parking lots, drivers make use of these thoroughfares every day. When this infrastructure falls into disrepair, it can mean serious hazards for drivers and passengers.
The most common dangerous conditions include:
Maintenance Issues: Road crews should be on top of degradations, such as potholes, cracked asphalt, gravely highway shoulders, and neglected bridges.
Signage: The markings and signs along our roads keep drivers safe by providing notice of hazards or road conditions ahead. Missing, faded, or overgrown brush around signs make it difficult for drivers and posted speed limits, stop signs, and traffic lights must be visible to be effective.
Safety Features: Guard rails, drainage systems, line markers, and road lighting are only useful if they are in place and in working order.
Work zones: When workers address needed repairs, they must do so without resulting in additional hazards. Once repairs are undertaken, roadwork causes its own potential for danger, such as materials that might obstruct the roadway and endanger passing drivers.
Other obstacles: Weather conditions like snow, rain, and ice certainly have the potential to cause dangerous road conditions. However, other forces of nature can also be troublesome. Wind can knock a tree into a driver’s path. If the tree was ill-maintained, an injured driver may have a case against a negligent property owner.
Sometimes the design of the road itself is the problem. Poorly designed intersections and sharp curves are common issues. Designs that do not allow for proper sight lines can be especially hazardous.
Victims injured in an accident caused by hazardous road conditions may have a case against the person, group, or government entity charged with maintaining the safety of the roadway where the accident occurred. An experienced attorney can help compile evidence, such as accident reports, photos of the scene, witness accounts, and even expert witness testimony to support your case. Guidance from an attorney is invaluable, especially regarding timeline constraints and other requirements imposed when bringing a case against a government entity.
If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident on a hazardous road, the Pittsburgh car accident lawyers at AlpernSchubert P.C. can help you recover damages for your injuries. Call us at 412-765-1888 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Pittsburgh, we serve clients throughout western Pennsylvania, including Allegheny County, Lawrence County, and Washington County.