The Prevalence and Litigation of Work Zone Injuries
More than 87,500 automobile crashes occurred within work zones in 2010, according to the Federal Highway Safety Administration. About 37,000 of these accidents involved physical injuries, equating to four physical injuries every hour inside of roadway work zones. In 2010, approximately 576 fatalities reportedly occurred, as a result of 514 fatal work zone accidents.
When these accidents occur, they leave a trail of physical and mental pain. In addition, there are the financial burdens placed on those involved, as well as their loved ones and dependents. Accident victims through Florida deserve to be adequately compensated for the pain and suffering that they must endure. In seeking that compensation, an experienced Miami accident lawyer will look at all responsible parties, which may include the general contractor in charge of the work zone and subcontractors, as well as applicable state agencies.
Factors Contributing to Accidents
Numerous factors may contribute to the prevalence and seriousness of work zone accidents. More than half of fatalities occurred when seat belts were not used. The Federal Highway Safety Administration also lists speeding and alcohol as influential factors. However, even if these circumstances are applicable to an injury case, they do not necessarily negate the responsibility of those in charge of the work zone.
There are numerous possibilities of wrongdoings that a work zone accident lawyer may assert against a work zone contractor on behalf of an injured party, including:
- Failure to adequately warn drivers to changes in road patterns or potentially hazardous work zone conditions
- Failure to comply with work zone safety procedures that are standard in the industry
- A lack of adherence to established traffic control plans
- Defects in construction materials or labor
- Usage of bad signing and construction markings
- The creation of pavement defects that cause steep drop offs in the road
- Providing inefficient lighting in a work zone at night
Timing is Everything
Promptly securing the assistance of a Miami lawyer is vital in a highway work zone accident case. The success of a ligated case can sometimes turn on what may seem like an insignificant piece of evidence. For this reason, it is important to document the condition of the work zone at the time of the accident. An lawyer can secure photographs of the general accident site, as well as small relevant details within the work zone. A lapse in time can diminish the accuracy of the evidence. Workers may make changes to the work zone or correct issues that may have caused the accident.
Contractors and subcontractors carry liability insurance and their insurance companies provide them with legal representation when they need to defend accident cases. These insurance company lawyers constantly work on accident defense cases and they employ numerous methods to avoid a finding of liability.
If you or a loved one has been injured within a roadway work zone, contact the Miami based legal team of Pita Weber & Del Prado to advocate throughout Florida on your behalf. Call the office today at 305-670-2889 for a free consultation.