Boston Road Hazard Accidents
Car accidents in Boston are caused by a variety of factors, including poor judgment, speeding, reckless driving, alcohol and drugs, and distractions. Poor road design may be the culprit in some cases but road hazards, usually manmade, can suddenly appear giving a driver little or no time to avoid a collision. In some instances, the driver may lose control with devastating consequences.
What is a Road Hazard?
Road hazards are anything out of the ordinary or expected when driving on a roadway or highway. These may include any of the following:
- Children exiting from a stopped school bus
- Poorly marked construction zones suddenly appearing
- Debris on the roadway
- Dead animals on the highway
- Poor signage not warning of hazards or unusual road conditions
- Dropped furniture or other objects from poorly secured loads
- Closure of traffic lanes or off ramps
- Traffic accident leading to sudden slowdown of traffic
- Stopped vehicle in the roadway
- Pedestrian or animal running into the street
- Poor visibility or lack of adequate warning at railroad crossings
These and other hazards can appear suddenly and cause a driver to swerve out of control, especially if driving at a high speed.
Responsibility for Road Hazard Accidents
Construction companies, local municipalities, counties, or the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are usually responsible for most road hazards if stemming from poor road maintenance or inadequate signage.
If a government entity was obligated, or under a legal duty, to safely maintain a roadway in some fashion that led to an injury or fatality, then a claim may be made pursuant to the Massachusetts Tort Claim Act (MTCA). In these matters, your car accident lawyer will have to prove that a government employee acting within the scope of his or her employment was negligent and caused the accident. If the city or county contracted with a private party to maintain the roadway and failed to do so properly, you might have private and public defendants as potentially liable parties.
In other cases, a private party may be responsible. A truck driver who failed to properly secure his load that falls on the road surface is responsible for any accidents or injuries that may ensue. In many cases, you may not be able to identify the owner of any objects left negligently on a roadway.
Motorists also have a duty to drive responsibly and to be on the lookout for road hazards. If a hazard is readily apparent or there was a sign or other indications of a slowdown, work zone or unusual road condition that the driver missed, then the defendant can assert that the injured driver was at least comparatively negligent for causing his or her own injuries.
Massachusetts has a modified comparative negligence statute whereby you must prove that the defendant or defendants were at least 51% at fault for your accident or you will not recover anything. If an issue of comparative fault does arise in your case, contact a Boston car accident lawyer.
Damages in a Road Hazards Accident Case
Collecting damages in any personal injury case requires that you first establish who the responsible party or parties may be and then proving that their conduct constituted negligence and was the proximate, or legal, cause of your accident and injuries. Once this has been proven, your lawyer must prove your damages.
Injuries from any auto accident can be serious. The most common car accident injuries include:
- Back and neck strains from whiplash
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken limbs
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Damage to internal organs
- Emotional trauma
- Permanent disfigurement
If your Boston car accident lawyer can demonstrate that the other party was at least 50% responsible, then you can collect the following damages:
- Medical expenses, past and future
- Lost earnings, past and future
- Loss of earning capacity
- Emotional trauma such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Pain and suffering
Your award for pain and suffering is based on the nature and extent of your injuries and the affect it has had on your daily life. Your car accident lawyer will examine your medical expenses, property damage, surgeries, recovery and recuperation, lost earning capacity, degree of permanent impairment, and inability to enjoy or to engage in the activities you did before the accident.
Consult Neil Burns & Roshan Jain , Boston Car Accident Lawyer
Consult with Burns & Jain, a personal injury law firm that has obtained substantial compensation for numerous clients against public and private parties responsible for accidents from road hazards. Call them today at 617-227-7423 for a free and confidential evaluation of your accident case.