What You Need To Know About Potholes and Car Accidents
According to TRIP, more than a quarter of the nation’s major roads and highways are in bad shape as of 2013. The cost of repairing the resulting broken axles, blown tires and battered shock absorbers costs the average motorist more than $500 each year. In more populated cities and metropolitan areas, these numbers can be even higher. TRIP estimates that the nationwide yearly cost of driving on bad road conditions totals approximately $109 billion. This is more than the combined federal, state and local spending of $91 billion a year in 2013.
The cost of potholes is not limited to only blown out tires and rim damage. Hitting even a small pothole can cause you to lose control and get into a serious accident, resulting in catastrophic injuries. Motor vehicle accidents can occur when private property owners and government entities fail to quickly respond and repair road and highways that are in disrepair. The law requires private owners and governmental entities in charge to keep the roads, driveways and sidewalks in a reasonably safe manner. If they fail to meet this duty, they may be liable for any resulting injuries.
What To Do If Your Car Is Damaged by a Pothole
In most cases, cars that are damaged by potholes or other road defects are covered by the motorist’s insurance collision coverage, subject to any deductible. However, you may also be entitled to other compensation depending on where and how your accident occurred.
- Private Property. If the damage to your vehicle happened on private property and it was the result of the negligence or recklessness of the property owner, the owner’s liability insurance should cover your losses. The same rule applies to commercial property owners. The bottom line is that private property owners have a duty to maintain their property in a reasonably safe manner for all lawful visitors who come onto their property.
- Public Property. Public property, which includes all other roads and highways, are maintained by governmental entities. If the applicable governmental entity fails to maintain their public ways, they may be liable to any individual who is injured in an accident caused by the defect on that poorly maintained roadway.
Regardless of whether you sustained an injury on a defective private or public roadway, you should immediately consult with an experienced car accident attorney to determine whether you have a valid claim to seek compensation for your injuries. If the attorney determines that you have a case, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, loss of wages, and pain and suffering.
Call an Attorney Today
If you or someone you know has been injured in a car accident due to a defective road, you need to make it a priority to look for an experienced attorney who will work hard to help you obtain the monetary compensation from the parties responsible for your injuries. For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation with a New Jersey car accident attorney, please call the Law Offices of Dan T. Matrafajlo at (908) 248-4404.