Roadway debris is a broad term but nonetheless accurately conveys that
any object on a roadway that should not be there, rocks, car parts, dirt,
furniture, or other similar objects are considered to be debris. These
types of things can cause an accident by being propelled at another vehicle,
or when struck by a vehicle, and even by causing a motorist to swerve
and lose control of the vehicle.
Experienced Newburgh car accident attorneys know when accidents caused by roadway debris are actually an accident
caused by someone’s negligence.
As you know, states and municipalities are responsible for roadway maintenance.
If some type of debris is on the road, it is their responsibility to cause
such to be removed. Such is easier said than done, however. Since roadway
systems are vast, the government must have notice that the dangerous condition
exists. After having notice, the government must be allowed a reasonable
amount of time to cure the hazard. If the government had notice, but did
not cure the condition timely, then the agency can be liable for accidents
caused by the roadway debris.
In addition to governmental entities, citizens and other motorists can
be liable for
a roadway debris accident. Determining whether or not a person negligently caused an accident will
depend on the reasonableness of the offending driver’s actions.
If a driver fails to use reasonable care when operating a car, as would
any other motorist, then his or her actions can give rise to
liability for negligence. Throwing objects from a vehicle, whether into the path of another vehicle,
or directly onto another vehicle, is not “reasonable.” These
actions cause foreseeable harm that is otherwise preventable.
Additionally, if a motorist places something on top of the vehicle, such
as luggage, or a mattress as I am sure that you have seen, and such is
not properly secured the driver can be liable if such falls off of the
car and causes an accident.
If a motorist sees debris on the road and intentionally runs over it, a
jury can be allowed to hold the offending
driver negligent if the resultant accidents and injuries were a foreseeable consequence of the driver’s actions.
So as you see, reasonable care requires drivers to refrain from causing
debris to enter the road. But it also applies to passengers and pedestrians.
Therefore, all persons must not intentionally or negligently cause debris
to enter the roadway. You should also see that reasonable care requires
drivers to avoid hitting such debris unless it was not possible to do
so safely or if some sort of emergency prevented the driver from avoiding
contact with the roadway debris.
Learn more about more of the common causes of motor vehicle crashes which
can be prevented in
our article posted here.
Our personal injury attorneys at
Mainetti, Mainetti, and O’Connor, P.C. have over 100 years of combined experience working with victims of personal
injury accidents throughout New York. We understand how to effectively
represent clients who have been injured in serious car accidents, particularly
throughout the Mid-Hudson Valley region in Kingston, Poughkeepsie, and
Newburgh where we have offices. Hear
what our clients are saying about us here and learn about just some of our
successful results here. If you or a loved one has been injured in a personal injury accident,
please do not hesitate to contact us by calling 845-340-HURT (4878) or
toll free at 866-440-4452, or by using the
convenient contact form here.