Do I Need a Lawyer If I Got in an Accident Because of Road Work?
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Do I Need a Lawyer If I Got in an Accident Because of Road Work?

traffic barricades and road work ahead signIf you sustain injuries or damage to your vehicle as a result of negligent road construction, you may have options for restitution. Liability laws in California and elsewhere in the nation allow motorists who have been the victim of car accidents caused by road work to hold the contracting company or the government itself responsible for your losses, and the Los Angeles personal injury lawyers at Ellis Law Corporation can help you collect the compensation you deserve after an accident.

Common Cases

Unfortunately, injuries resulting from improperly managed road work operations are fairly common due to an array of oversights.

One of the most frequent causes of accidents during road construction is inadequate or poorly placed signage, and for this reason both federal and state authorities specify the locations where warnings must appear. Failure by companies or municipalities to display this signage correctly can lead to an accident, and in this case the party managing the work is typically held responsible for damages.

Other common causes of auto accidents caused by negligent road work include leaving the pavement in an unsafe condition, lack of warning for motorists to exercise caution and travel at reduced speeds in the midst of a project, and requiring motorists to make too sharp a turn as a result of altered traffic patterns. In each of these scenarios, the managing party is most often held responsible for injuries to drivers, workers, and pedestrians that occur as a result.

Can Managing Parties Be Responsible After Work is Completed?

In some cases, yes. Accidents that can be shown to have been caused by poor road conditions left by a road work project can also render a driver eligible for compensation.

These incidents are more frequently caused by inadequate maintenance rather than negligent construction, and often result in liability for the “owner” of the road, whether it be the local municipality, the state, or other jurisdictions. Common triggers for liability after construction include potholes, obstruction, and improper/inadequate lighting for night driving.

What Are My Options After an Accident?

Whether you’re a motorist, a pedestrian, or a pedestrian, you may have legal options in the event of a car accident. Consult a

The type of lawsuit differs based on whether you are a worker or a citizen, but the standard of proof is generally similar. In order to prove that the managing party was negligent in their procedure, your personal injury attorney will typically need to demonstrate three elements:

  1. The managing party failed to create a safe construction zone. With limited exceptions, an organization in charge of a road construction project bears wide-ranging responsibility to create a clearly marked construction zone that is safe for both workers and motorists. This means the defining question in such a lawsuit is “what factors create a safe construction zone?”
  2. The managing party breached this responsibility. Any failure by the organization to satisfy their duty to create a safe construction zone can prove their negligence and trigger their liability for compensation. For example, if a managing party had a responsibility to give motorist at minimum half a mile of warning before the start of a construction zone and fails to do so, it has failed to satisfy its duty of care and acted in negligence. This means that any injury or damage sustained by an employee or citizen may open the organization to liability.
  3. Harm was caused by the breach. In personal injury and auto accident cases, the most common result of accidents caused by negligence include property damage, medical expenses, lost wages, and enduring impact to the victim’s quality of life.

In these scenarios, it becomes critical for the victim to prove that the negligence of the managing party directly caused the harm suffered. As an example, if a motorist is able to prove that a construction company created too sharp a curve in the road for the posted speed limit, and further demonstrates that the maximum safe speed was below the posted figure, then the negligence is proved and the managing party is liable.

Although motorists, workers, and pedestrians have extensive options for recourse in the event of an auto accident caused by negligence in road construction, time is of the essence in building and establishing a comprehensive case. If you have recently suffered injury or damages in an auto accident in Los Angeles that you believe was caused by negligence, contact one of our Los Angeles car accident attorneys at the Ellis Law Corporation immediately to learn more about your options.