Municipalities have an obligation to their residents to keep roadways safe, easy to navigate, and free of obstructions. Unfortunately, as anyone who has ever driven will tell you, that just isn’t how it happens. When the weather doesn’t cooperate or the county budget doesn’t stretch as far as it needs to, roads can fall into disrepair. This puts drivers and passengers at risk of preventable accidents.
There are several ways that city planners and municipal leaders may fail at road design and maintenance.
Intersections should be easy to understand and identify from a distance and up close. If drivers and motorcyclists have to stop prior to the intersection to understand how to navigate it, the road is defective. Complicated intersections can leave people turning from or into the incorrect lane, missing walkways, and not seeing important signage.
Walkways protect pedestrians and help drivers prevent accidents. When walkways are difficult to see or poorly marked, pedestrians, motorcyclists, and drivers all suffer. Even if a motorcyclist can avoid a crash by hitting the brakes or swerving, they run the risk of getting involved in another accident.
Signs Blocked by Trees and Other Obstacles
Landscaping is a surprisingly important part of road safety and maintenance. Even the most carefully planned road can become impassable when trees and shrubs start blocking important signs.
Additionally, overgrown trees and bushes can make it difficult to see vehicles approaching from other directions. This puts motorcyclists in the position of having to make blind turns and hope for the best, which is obviously a dangerous option. Again, this is something that tends to fall to the bottom of the priority list in an overworked municipality or a municipality with more needs than money.
Roads Damaged by Weather
Roads need frequent maintenance and upkeep to be safe for drivers. While roadway defects can cause accidents for anyone, people in cars are far more likely to walk away from these accidents with minimal or no injuries. The design of a motorcycle automatically puts bikers at greater risk of injuries when they hit an uneven or unsteady roadway. If roads aren’t maintained after seasons of heavy rain, snow, or wind, they are bound to become uneven and difficult to navigate.
What You Should Do After an Auto Accident Caused by Road Defects
If you’re involved in an accident that’s caused by a road defect, you may wonder what comes next. Crashes where one driver is at fault are easier to handle, as you only have to negotiate with their insurance. However, claims against the government are inherently more time-consuming and challenging.
You generally have to go through a slightly different process, alert the appropriate parties that you plan on filing a case against them, and then do so—all on a tighter time frame. Personal injury claims against the government typically have a much shorter statute of limitations than claims against private parties, so delaying at all in your claim could be a huge mistake. Waiting too long could mean giving up your right to sue and losing your chance at fair and full compensation.
When you suspect that the government is liable for an accident, talk to an attorney as soon as possible.
Contact Mann & Potter to Start Your Claim Now
Have you been injured in a vehicle accident? Act quickly to preserve the evidence and hold the right party accountable. Take the first step now by calling Mann & Potter at 205-879-9661 or filling out our . We’re here to help you.