Can You Sue for an Automobile Accident Caused by Road Debris?
With the large number of cars on the road today, car accidents are part of the experience of driving. In some cases, accidents are just that – accidents, either the result of a natural occurrence, such as a gust of wind pulling an automobile off the road into a ravine, or through the fault of the automobile’s operator alone, like when he/she swerves to avoid an animal on the road and hits a pothole. In other cases, especially when multiple automobiles are involved, responsibility may lay with multiple drivers. In all circumstances, retaining the services of an experienced car accident attorney will be crucial to ensuring that an injured individual can obtain reimbursement for the costs associated with any injuries resulting from the accident. One type of automobile accident that is a bit more complex are those in which damages are caused by debris on the road. As this article illustrates, the presence of debris on the roads has a very discernable effect on automobile accidents.
Road Hazards in Florida
As alluded to above, automobile accidents can sometimes be caused by unexpected and dangerous objects or road conditions. Some examples of road hazards commonly found on roads and highways include:
- Debris, such as cargo from an improperly loaded truck or material from a construction zone;
- Trees or other shrubbery that blocks a driver’s path or line of sight; and
- Various parts of automobiles previously involved in an accident which have not been cleared from the road.
Normally, some of these hazards, such as litter, really do not pose a problem for a single automobile. However, as more and more automobiles ride by, the litter is picked up by the wheels or the draft of the automobile, and can cause blind spots in other drivers, causing an accident. In fact, automobile accidents caused by debris on the motorway is not an uncommon occurrence, as the result of this study highlights.
Victims of an automobile accident can hold responsible parties liable for the harm that they caused. Liability arises under the legal theory of negligence, and, more specifically, under personal injury. Accordingly, to be successful against a liable defendant in a personal injury claim, the injured individual would have to show that the defendant’s negligence caused the crash. That is, the injured individual must prove each of the following elements:
- Duty of care – All drivers must exercise a reasonable modicum of care under the circumstances;
- Breach of the duty – The defendant must have failed to uphold his/her duty of care;
- Causation – The breach must be the direct cause of the injuries; and
- Damages – There must be actual damages, such as medical bills.
As may be apparent, the most difficult aspect of debris-caused injuries is ascertaining who is responsible. In some cases, debris may have been left on the motorway for an extended period of time. However, talking with an experienced attorney can help to identify the responsible party and assess whether he/she will have to pay damages.
Seek Legal Advice
If you were involved in an automobile accident caused by debris on the motorway, contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Pita Weber & Del Prado as soon as possible. We have years of experience in automobile accident claims, and will build a strong case to help you win compensation. If we believe that the debris is the primary cause of the accident, and that there is a way to hold a person or entity liable, we will fight for your right to damages. Contact our Miami office today for an initial consultation.