A construction zone is a necessary evil on the roadways. They are important and essential for activities like road maintenance, yet they also come with an above-average risk of accidents. If you have been injured in one of these crashes in Boca Raton, Miami, a Boca Raton car accident lawyer can help you seek compensatory damages.
However, before you file a claim for damages, it is important to understand what a construction zone is, why accidents occur in these areas, and who is liable for these accidents.
What is A Construction Zone?
A stretch of the road where repair or maintenance is ongoing is typically designated as a construction zone. It is also known as a work zone. You would normally recognize such a zone by the orange cones placed on the road to indicate traffic congestion or work area ahead.
Construction zones are essential as roads need ongoing repair and maintenance. That being said, it is the responsibility of the contractor or agency overseeing these repairs to ensure that suitable safety measures are implemented at a work zone.
Major Causes of Construction Zone Accidents
Accidents in a construction zone are caused by a number of reasons. These typically include the following.
Construction Materials: Materials such as specialized machinery and debris in a construction zone can create hazards. These result in accidents when they are not safely removed from the roadway and stored at a safe distance.
Over Speeding: Many drivers fail to slow down in time for a construction zone. This often results in rear-end collisions.
Improperly Placed Signs: Signs such as orange cones can be another reason for drivers to panic and lose control. A panicked driver may end up striking the cones, then veering away and colliding with other vehicles.
Visibility Issues: Poor visibility and lighting in construction zones can contribute to crashes.
Traffic Congestion: Traffic through a construction zone is typically narrowed to one or two lanes. The limited lane space, congestion of the vehicles, and slow speed can also result in collisions between vehicles. However, collisions of this nature typically result in property damage and only minor injuries.
Driver Frustration: When driving through a construction zone, a driver may lose his calm due to traffic blockage. This can cause the driver to act recklessly and end up crashing into another vehicle or object.
When any of the involved parties commit negligence in a construction zone, accidents occur. From 2015 to 2019, Florida saw over 50,000 construction zone crashes resulting in more than 380 fatalities. It is important to hold a liable party accountable in the wake of an accident like this.
Potentially Liable Parties
A number of parties can be held liable for a construction-zone crash. These include the government entity overseeing the work, the construction company contracted for the job, or the driver. In some situations, more than one party is liable in which case the fault is distributed.
A driver may be held liable for a construction zone crash if he or she was over-speeding at the time of the crash. The driver will also be responsible for the crash if he or she acted in a negligent way. This includes:
- Being distracted during driving. This can include texting, taking a call, adjusting the radio, or virtually any other form of distraction.
- Failure to maintain a safe distance from other vehicles.
- Driving under the influence.
If a contractor working at a construction zone acts negligently and causes a crash, the government entity which awarded the contract can be held liable. The entity would be held responsible for failure to hire a suitably qualified and experienced contractor.
Construction Company’s Liability
The construction company or the contractor working at a construction zone is responsible for on-site safety. This involves putting up signs, removing debris from the roadway, guiding the motorists about the diversion, and so on. If a crash results because the company failed to fulfill one of these duties, victims of the crash can file a damages claim against the construction company. The claimant will then need to show how the company fell short of its duties and was guilty of negligence that directly contributed to the crash.
Hiring a Reliable Boca Raton Car Accident Lawyer
If you have suffered a car crash in a construction zone in Boca Raton, it is important to hire professional legal help at the earliest. Here at Englander Peebles, we work with you to identify the liable party in a construction zone crash. We also create an estimate of the damages you can recover and then help you file the claim without losing any time. Our aim is to help you secure the maximum amount of compensatory damages. Message us today to discuss your car crash claim with our lawyers.