Maryland Road Defect Attorneys
Road Defect Attorneys in Maryland Representing the Rights of Victims
Roadways showing wear and tear are not uncommon to drivers, but too often these annoyances can turn into dangerous and even fatal conditions. Poorly designed and maintained streets and highways may involve the city, county, and state standing accountable for unsafe public roads. A knowledgeable Maryland road defect attorney can help pursue complicated claims against these entities. If you or a loved one encountered a road defect that resulted in damage or injury, reach out to one of the lawyers at Alpert Schreyer, LLC, today to understand your rights and the possible compensation available to you.
Your normal commute might typically take you through a safe driving environment with clearly posted signs and well-maintained roads. Nonetheless, some conditions could put you at risk.
Road defects can cause problems passing through a road, possibly causing accidents when a driver loses control because of an obstruction or while trying to stay clear of the dangerous area. These accidents may involve one or more vehicles and can result in serious or even fatal injuries. Common road defects that could prove hazardous are:
- Potholes, cracks in the road, or unmarked speed bumps
- Malfunctioning traffic lights
- Improper signs
- Poor road design—difficult to see medians, sharp turns, narrow shoulders, issues with drainage
- Inadequate guardrails
- Unmarked construction zones
- Insufficient road striping
- Poorly planned landscaping or other visual obstructions
- Insufficiently plowed or salted roads during winter months
- Dangerous passing lanes
- Short exit lanes for accelerating or decelerating
- Uneven pavement—pooling water that may lead to hydroplaning
According to data from the Federal Highway Administration, the annual total extra vehicle repairs and operating costs due to driving on roads in need of repair was $1.598 billion in Maryland, totaling $422 per motorist. The FHA estimates that 55 percent of Maryland roadways are in poor or mediocre condition. With statewide numbers so large, it is no wonder that damages to vehicles and drivers occur because of road defects.
Unsafe roadways require accountability in the same way that accidents involving negligent drivers do. Government entities have a duty to keep roads safe and maintained for motorists. A breach of that duty may allow you to recover compensation for any automobile accidents that a government entity could have avoided with better oversight and care.
A government entity could face liability if:
- A government entity had control over roadway involved
- The roadway created an unreasonable risk for drivers
- The government entity had constructive or actual knowledge of the risk or danger
- A government entity failed to repair the damage in a timely manner
- Roadway defects contributed to the injuries sustained
At times, the general contractor in charge of designing and building the road can face liability for conditions leading to your incident. Resources that may help prove liability include construction plans, reports of accidents in the same area, video surveillance, contracts pertaining to the construction, maintenance records, permits to proceed with construction, and other notices of claims filed. A thorough investigation may require an examination of the particular roadway, scene of the accident, and consultation with construction engineers. An experienced attorney can help you sort through the intricacies of this process and find the evidence you need to pursue your claim.
Submitting a Claim
Maryland sets specific deadlines for submitting claims to report a road hazard incident from pothole damage, road debris, or other conditions. For example, you must send a claim to the Maryland Transit Administration within one year of the injury. To make sure you submit your claim within the appropriate timeframe, don’t delay in contacting our Maryland road defect attorneys to assist you with your options.
Recovering for Damages
Maryland caps damages for personal injury lawsuits brought against a municipality or state government at $400,000. Due to the expense and scope of medical costs related to injuries suffered in these cases, seek an experienced attorney to help you recover the most damages possible in your case.
Injuries and expenses you may deal with in the aftermath of an accident caused by a road defect include:
- Wrongful death
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
- Internal bleeding or organ damage
- Permanent disability or disfigurement
- Medical expenses
- Lost income
- Estimated future medical costs
- Mental anguish
- Soft tissue injuries
- Lost bodily functions
- Damage or total loss of vehicle—a blown tire, collision damage, etc.
Gathering information about the damages you incur may speed up the process of your claim. Any documentation related to the circumstances of your case can help your attorney prepare your case. Information you may compile includes medical reports and expenses, photos of the road defect, damaged property reports, etc.
If you are worried that you may bear partial fault for the accident, seek a trustworthy road defect attorney to help you understand your rights. You may still file a claim and hold another entity responsible for its actions, or lack thereof, leading up to the incident. A skilled Maryland attorney will also know how to reduce your share of liability.
Contact an Experienced Maryland Road Defect Lawyer as Soon as Possible
Discussing your situation with one of our Maryland road defect attorneys at Alpert Schreyer, LLC, will help you understand the rights and compensation the at-fault government or contractor owes to you. Maintaining public roads and highways and ensuring hazard free and safe streets are the responsibility of the city or state. You may potentially bring a claim against multiple parties as well, including the contracting company, civil engineer designing the defective roadway, or other non-governmental parties responsible for the hazardous condition.
If you or a loved one is injured in a road defect accident, let us help you sort through the intricacies of your case and hold the appropriate entity accountable on your behalf as you deal with the aftermath of injuries and damage. Contact our law office today for a free case evaluation at (844) 632-7274 or reach out through our online contact form.