How to Get Compensation for Your Construction Zone Accident
It’s road construction season in the Pacific Northwest. In Bellingham alone, there are several road projects happening right now. While construction projects are needed from time to time, accidents can and do happen in road construction zones. According to the Federal Highway Administration, 27,037 people (about 773 per year) lost their lives in work zone crashes between 1982 and 2017. The NSC reports that 842 people were killed and 39,100 people were injured in work zone crashes in 2019. Overall, work zone deaths have increased by 44 percent since 2010. There are several specific safety issues that come along with construction zones that drivers and construction companies need to be aware of to prevent construction zone accidents.
Common causes of construction zone accidents
There are several common causes of construction zone crashes, including:
- Bottlenecking traffic
- Sudden merging
- Distracted driving
- Obstacles in the roadway
- Drivers getting confused by detours
- Construction vehicles blind spots
Common types of construction zone accidents
The most common types of construction zone accidents are:
- Rear-end accidents
- Chain reaction accidents involving multiple vehicles
- Single-vehicle accidents from crashing into obstacles
- Swerving into another vehicle while trying to avoid an obstacle
- Hit by construction vehicle
If you or a loved one was injured in a construction zone car accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your damages including medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, disability, and more. A car accident lawyer is especially helpful for work zone accident claims as there are particular liability issues that come up in this type of car accident.
Liability issues in construction zone accidents
In most motor vehicle accidents, there is one at-fault driver and any settlement is from their car insurance. When it comes to construction zone accidents, there are more likely to be several drivers involved because of the risk for chain-reaction accidents. Whenever multiple drivers are involved, the claim is going to be more legally complicated. In other cases, the construction company or even the government may be liable for the accident.
The construction company or government may be deemed liable in the following circumstances:
- Failure to warn drivers about the construction zone with adequate signage
- Failure to guide traffic as needed
- Left equipment or debris in the road knowing it could be hazardous to drivers
- Failure to properly mark temporary lanes for drivers to use
- Failure to mark or sign off a dangerous area on the stretch of road they are working on
Your best chance of receiving fair compensation for your injuries and other damages in a road construction accident is to contact an experienced, local car accident attorney.
Traffic fines in construction zones
In Washington State, traffic fines are strictly enforced in construction zones. A ticket for speeding in a construction zone is considered an enhanced speeding ticket, which means that the fine is doubled. The reasoning behind this is that speeding through a construction zone is considered especially dangerous. In addition, any person who drives recklessly in a construction zone may be subject to a gross misdemeanor.
Seek the help of a car accident attorney
If you or a loved one was injured because of the negligence of another, contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your legal rights. Let an experienced car accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times larger with the help of a lawyer. Call the personal injury lawyers at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!