The Washington Post reported in 2009 that design or poor road conditions played a role in more than half of fatal car accidents in the United States, resulting in more deaths than any other factor, including speeding , driving while intoxicated and the lack of use of safety belts. Despite such a dramatic impact on road safety, state and local governments often do not correct problems or warn drivers about the risks they face. These deficiencies in design and maintenance, combined with the lack of warning of risks, can cause serious traffic accidents .
In fact, a federal study indicated that when the causes of the accident could be attributed to the road environment , 24 percent were caused by obstruction of visibility, bad signs and signals, bad design of the road and other problems related to roads
What kind of problems related to the roads can contribute to an accident?
A huge variety of road deficiencies has the potential to cause serious accidents. Some of them include:
- Considerable decrease in the edges of the road
- Inadequate turning angle in curves
- Failure to install traffic signals
- Missing or defective containment fences
- Inadequate lighting
- Uneven roadway with holes
- Insufficient drainage and accumulated water on motorways
- Narrow shoulders or decrease of high shoulders.
- Blurred center lines and lack of reflective signals.
- Insufficient warning signs
Design and maintenance failures like these, as well as other deficiencies, can make the tracks excessively dangerous. The lack of warning about such deficiencies, however, may be the key to obtaining compensation after an accident caused by an excessively dangerous route.
The lack of warning about dangerous road conditions may allow you to obtain compensation after an accident.
It is possible to file a claim for damages against the government agency responsible for designing, constructing or maintaining a dangerous route. An article published in a law journal considers that design or maintenance problems may not be as important for the demand for damages as the lack of warnings. The body responsible for the maintenance of this route is also responsible for warning about the existence of risks of driving on the road.
The lack of warning is crucial if the signs are obscured, damaged or simply do not exist. The entity responsible for the maintenance of the road is also responsible for warning signs about water accumulated in runways of known low areas, narrow verges, irregular pavement, construction zones and dangerous stretches of the road such as curves with little warning. All these conditions can cause accidents, especially when drivers do not receive sufficient warnings by clearly visible and easy to understand signs on the road. The absence of such signals can be crucial to find responsibility.
Because many roads are built and maintained by government agencies, there are special rules on how and when to file a lawsuit. However, it is possible, under certain circumstances, to sue the government for acts of negligence. The lack of warning of known hazards is often considered one of those circumstances and if you were involved in an accident on a dangerous road with insufficient warning signs you should consult a lawyer.
Call us today to discuss your case with a lawyer who specializes in automobile accidents in Houston
You could be entitled to compensation if you were involved in an accident and the design or maintenance of the roadway could have been the culprit. For a free evaluation of your case to find out if you are entitled to compensation for your injuries, contact Stewart J. Guss, attorney, at 866-636-0530 , or send us an email through our form contact online .