Dangerous and Defective Roads

Florida’s highways and streets and teeming with traffic, and it’s only gotten worse as the population has exploded faster than nearly every other state – doubling since 1980 and still climbing. Aside from the hazards of dodging more cars, the heavy vehicle volume has the additional effect of wearing down our infrastructure, making our roads even more dangerous. Haphazard road construction hurried to meet the needs of frenzied population growth has also resulted in a fair number of defectively designed roads.

Dangerous and defective roads in Fort Lauderdale or elsewhere in Florida are those that are not adequately maintained or were never designed properly in the first place.

At The Ansara Law Firm, our Fort Lauderdale car accident attorneys know that when a crash results in serious injuries, it’s important to examine whether defective roads or inherently dangerous roads may have played a role. Where such factors play a role in a South Florida crash, there may be grounds to hold certain entities financially liable.

Potential defendants in dangerous and defective roads lawsuits include:

  • State government.
  • County governments.
  • Contractors.
  • Utility companies.
  • Engineering firms.

Such claims are often made when we have seen a history of car accidents repeatedly at a certain intersection or on a given stretch of highway. This fact is a red flag to indicate that dangers were intrinsic to the layout or construction of the road itself or that there is some defect that has resulted from wear-and-tear that was not properly or promptly repaired.

If you have suffered a serious injury or the loss of a loved one due to defective and dangerous road design or maintenance, our South Florida injury lawyers can help.

Dangerous Highways, Defective Roads and Bridge Defects

Our Fort Lauderdale attorneys are committed to obtaining favorable settlements and verdicts on behalf of clients injured or bereaved as a direct result of improper road design or poor road maintenance.

The fact is, a substantial number of crashes on Florida roads can be attributed to poor highway design and conditions. In fact, one study commissioned by the Transportation Construction Coalition revealed that nearly half the deadly crashes in the U.S. involve roadway defects and poor maintenance. Road-related conditions factored into 22,000 deaths over the course of the 18-month study. The findings suggested we lose $218 billion nationally in these crashes, compared to the $130 billion we lose as a result of drunk driving.

Some examples of the kinds of scenarios that can give rise to an injury lawsuit for such a case are:

  • Curves that are improperly graded.
  • Lack of proper water drainage on roads and highways.
  • Signs obscured due to overgrown trees and other foliage.
  • Medians or traffic islands that are difficult to see at night.
  • Dips in the road that are unmarked.
  • Entries to the road that are “blind” and unmarked.
  • Intersections equipped with ineffective yield signs or stop signs where a traffic light would be more appropriate.
  • Confusing signs or distracting signals.
  • Older bridges with weakened rivets or struts.
  • Pavement that is uneven.
  • Ditches too close to the roadway.
  • Improperly designed/ situated guardrail.
  • Blind corners resulting from a design flaw.
  • Potholes, faulty speed bumps or cracks.
  • Inadequate road shoulder.
  • Defective/ non-working traffic signals.
  • Poorly placed utility poles.

There are numerous federal and state laws that outline road design requirements and safety standards. These statutes often outline how and when construction should take place, as well as what type of warnings must be installed and the gradients need to be used.

Still, we make sure clients know: Government liability for negligence is not a simple matter. Different rules apply for government entities, such as sovereign immunity. F.S. 768.28 waives that sovereign immunity in certain tort actions, but there are limitations on damages and attorney fees that can be recovered.

Of course, this is where having an experienced injury lawyer makes a major difference. We will look closely at each element of a case based on dangerous or defective roads to determine:

  • Whether you have a case.
  • If so, which parties may feasibly be held liable.
  • How best to pursue claims against each of those parties in a way that will maximize the damages you recover.

In order to effectively litigate these types of cases, you must have a lawyer with a firm grasp on the interplay among local, state and federal regulations, as well as understanding regarding the most recently available research and technology.

Contact Fort Lauderdale Lawyer Richard Ansara at The Ansara Law Firm, by calling (954) 761-4011 for a free consultation.

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