According to statistics by the Federal Highway Administration, 576 people were killed in automobile accidents involving road construction zones in 2010. The largest numbers of fatalities were in Florida and Texas; two states with very busy roadways and road work occurring year-round. Cone zones can be a dangerous place, both for the people working in the zones and the drivers that encounter them. If you are involved in an accident involving a construction zone, it is important to understand your rights and potential liability for the crash.
Risks Associated with Construction Zones
Construction zones feature their own unique set of hazards, which might include the following:
- Heavy equipment and vehicles at the construction zone
- Reduced visibility during nighttime work
- Uneven or treacherous road conditions
- Detours that can sometimes be difficult to navigate
In addition, drivers through the zone may pose their own hazard, by driving too fast, ignoring posted construction signs or driving while talking or texting on a cell phone. Any of these factors can increase the danger in an already risky situation, leading to what could be a tragic construction accident.
Who is Liable?
Accidents in construction zones could be the liability of the construction company, if the business fails to comply with OSHA regulations or creates a hazardous environment for drivers moving through the area. Drivers can also be held liable if they fail to observe posted warnings, speed through the area or drive recklessly in another way.
If you are hurt in an accident in a construction zone, you may be eligible for legal compensation from the person or company responsible for the accident. Contact a NY construction attorney to find out what your rights are after your accident.