When we think of car accidents, the typical scenario involves two vehicles colliding, with one driver often being at fault. However, there are cases where accidents are caused by flying or stationary road debris, leading to totaled vehicles and serious injuries. But who should be held liable in such incidents?
Determining liability in road debris accidents can be challenging due to various factors involved. In this article, we’ll explore the liability associated with both flying and stationary road debris and provide guidance on what to do after a roadway debris accident.
Road debris can encompass a wide range of objects that can pose dangers to motorists. Some common types of debris include car decorations, broken glass, furniture, vehicle parts, mattresses, trash, rocks, and even roadkill. Flying debris can be particularly hazardous on the road and may result from adverse weather conditions, heavy winds, or objects falling from high-speed vehicles.
On the other hand, avoidable debris refers to stationary objects lying on the road. Examples of avoidable debris include tire fragments, furniture, construction cones, detached trailers, or any other immobile debris rather than objects in motion.
The liability for a flying debris accident primarily depends on the origin of the debris. If the accident was caused by debris falling from another driver’s vehicle, their insurance company typically considers them at fault for the incident. However, if the driver flees the scene or is unaware of the debris falling off their vehicle, identifying them becomes difficult.
If the responsible driver cannot be identified, gathering evidence from eyewitnesses and dashboard camera footage can be helpful in determining liability. Providing the police with any available information, such as the vehicle’s make and model, description, or license plate number, can aid in tracking down the negligent driver.
In cases involving avoidable debris, the driver who crashed into those objects is usually held liable. Unfortunately, if the driver sustains injuries in such an accident, their car insurance may not cover medical expenses unless they have specific medical payments coverage. Additionally, this coverage doesn’t compensate for lost wages, leaving the driver without financial recovery for time off work due to the injury.
Nevertheless, there are exceptions to this rule. For instance, if the accident occurred because a construction company placed a traffic cone in a hazardous location, the construction company may be deemed at fault. Similarly, municipalities can be held liable for debris-related accidents if they failed to remove hazardous road debris as required by regulations.
Navigating the aftermath of a road debris accident can be complicated, especially when determining liability. Seeking legal assistance from experienced car accident attorneys can help you build a strong case and maximize your chances of receiving fair compensation for the damages and injuries sustained in the accident.
Contact Hurst Limontes today to discuss your options. We have decades of combined experience fighting for our clients in any number of personal injury claims. We work on a contingency basis, meaning there is no cost to you unless we reach a settlement or jury verdict award on your behalf.
Call 317-636-0808 or complete the form below for a FREE and confidential consultation.