If you own a car in Philadelphia, you have probably complained about poor road conditions or defectively designed highways in our city at least once this past month.
While human errors such as drunk driving, distracted driving, and speeding cause the vast majority of car accidents in Philadelphia, bad road conditions and defectively designed highways can be just as dangerous.
Bad road conditions and poorly designed highways in Philadelphia
Poor road conditions fall into two categories: (1) those that occur as a result of natural events such as rains, flooding, snowing, thunderstorms, and hurricanes, and (2) those that arise from improper inspection and maintenance as well as negligence in making the roads safe for car drivers, cyclists, motorcyclists, truck drivers, and pedestrians.
Defectively designed highways, on the other hand, are caused by the government’s inability to design, construct, and build highways and intersections in a way that makes them as safe as possible. “Failure to do so may expose motorists to the risk of bodily injury and death,” says our Philadelphia poor road conditions attorney at Dan Doyle Law Group.
The government’s liability for poor road conditions
Recovering damages after a car accident caused by poor road conditions will not be easy, to say the least. After all, various government agencies and entities can be responsible for inspection, maintenance, construction, and design of roads, highways, intersections, and other elements such as traffic signs, lighting, crosswalk markings, rumble strips, paint markings, traffic lights, and many more.
Our experienced poor road conditions & defectively designed highways attorney in Philadelphia explains that when the government is to blame for a hazardous road condition or inadequate design of the highway, freeway, or intersection, you may be able to pursue a personal injury claim against the appropriate government entity.
What makes road conditions ‘unsafe’ and ‘poor’?
Some of you might wonder “What can be described as unsafe or poor road conditions?” Here are just a few examples of what makes road conditions dangerous:
Potholes, cracks, uneven pavement, and sudden overhangs that can cause a motorist to lose control of his or her vehicles
Faded paint markings
Faded crosswalk markings or improperly designed crosswalks and intersections;
Traffic signs that have fallen or have been damaged
Improperly installed guardrails on curves and overpasses (or lack thereof)
Lack of rumble strips on highways
Poor lightning near crosswalks and intersections
Poor traffic control in and around construction zones
Lifted sidewalks due to tree roots
Failure to warn of construction works on the road of highway
Damaged pavement and eroding road surfaces and
Icy and snowy road conditions untreated or treated improperly
This is a non-exhaustive list of what can be considered “poor road conditions” in Philadelphia and elsewhere in Pennsylvania.
Examples of ‘defectively designed highways’ in Philadelphia
But what about defectively designed highways in Philadelphia? Our Philadelphia bad road conditions lawyer at Dan Doyle Law Group outlines some of the most common defects in highway design:
Negligent design of turns that makes them dangerous even when motorists exercise a duty of care
Improperly designed highways that expose motorists to hazardous road conditions
Highways that obstruct motorists’ point of view when driving
Damaged or lack of guardrails
Improper paint markings or lack thereof
Unmarked construction zones
Inadequate traffic signs and traffic lights on the highway (or lack thereof) and
Roadways without a shoulder to give motorists an opportunity to pull over in the event of an emergency
More often than not, proper inspection and maintenance of roads and adequate design and construction of highways can prevent many car accidents in our state. Since government agencies are most often responsible for construction, design, and maintenance of roads and highways in Philadelphia, our experienced poor road conditions lawyer in Philadelphia has to warn about something: suing a government agency in Philadelphia can be a herculean task unless you have a skilled attorney by your side. In fact, identifying the liable government agency will not be easy since a variety of federal, state, municipal, county, and city department may have contributed to making this particular road or highway unsafe.