Because southern California is known for its pleasant weather, drivers are sometimes unprepared to deal with any bad weather that does occur. Heavy rains may limit visibility, make roads slippery, and cause vehicles to hydroplane, as seen during El Nino rainstorms. While a motorist from a wet environment would not be bothered by similar conditions, Californians have a hard time adjusting. According to data from the California Highway Patrol, automobile accident rates increase during specific periods of the day when it's raining.
It is critical to recognize that weather-related incidents are not "acts of God" for which no one is responsible. It is the driver's responsibility to react to changing road and weather conditions. A motorist may be held responsible for any accidents they cause if they drive too quickly for the conditions or otherwise conduct recklessly.
Errors in road design
Flaws in the roadway's design can sometimes enhance the likelihood of an accident. For example, the road may include a steep bend that cannot be safely navigated at the posted speed limit. To assist prevent accidents, such a curve should be appropriately marked. When there are defects in the road design and no steps have been made to safeguard the public, it is theoretically feasible to file a personal injury claim against the road's owner.
In practice, however, such assertions are uncommon. Government agencies hold the majority of roadways, and the theory of sovereign immunity protects them from claims stemming from flaws in approved street plans.
Poor road upkeep is a final form of road fault that can cause automobile accidents. When road upkeep is neglected, a wide range of issues can develop. Trees and other vegetation, for example, may become overgrown, blocking lines of sight or obscuring signage. It's possible that road signs will fade and become unreadable. Drivers may veer out of their lanes as a result of debris left on the road.
The body in charge of road maintenance may be held liable for accidents caused by certain types of maintenance issues. However, it will be required to show that the entity was aware of the hazard or should have been aware of it and did nothing to address it.
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Please call us at 800-333-0000 to book a free first consultation with The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker if you have any questions concerning responsibility in a vehicle accident lawsuit.