Construction zones are a crucial part of New York’s evolving infrastructure. However, they can pose many risks to the motorists who drive through them — if another driver or the construction company acts negligently, they may be held liable for any injuries they caused you to sustain. By filing a personal injury action for a construction zone accident, you may be entitled to hold the responsible party accountable for the harm they caused you to suffer and recover your economic and non-economic damages.
Causes of Construction Zone Accidents
Construction zones exist for the purpose of maintaining and repairing roadway conditions. But they can be particularly hazardous — and motor vehicle accidents in these locations are not uncommon. While many construction zone accidents are caused by negligent construction practices, they can also arise due to the following:
- Inadequate signage — Construction zones can create unexpected detours and when signage is not adequately placed, it can create confusion for drivers and lead to car crashes.
- Debris left in the road — Construction material must be removed from the road when construction is complete. Debris that is left in the roadway can result in a driver suddenly braking to avoid it or blowing a tire out, resulting in both single vehicle and chain reaction accidents.
- Flying debris — When proper safety protocol is not followed, debris can be kicked up by jackhammers or fly off construction vehicles. These particles can strike the windshields and windows of vehicles, causing serious accidents.
- Unsafe equipment operation — When equipment is not operated properly or a worker has not been provided with adequate training, it can create hazardous conditions in the construction zone that lead to collisions with motor vehicles.
- Defective machinery — If equipment or machinery used in a construction zone is defective or flawed due to a defect in the design, it may fail. This can lead to accidents that cause severe injuries to those who travel through them.
- Poorly maintained roads — The machinery used in road construction often creates potholes and depressions in the road. In the event a driver strikes a pothole, they can lose control of their vehicle and collide with another.
- Speeding and reckless driving — A driver must abide by the posted speed limit in a work zone, regardless of whether it is currently active. Because of narrow lanes and other hazards, failure to reduce speed in these locations can be dangerous, resulting in single-vehicle or multiple-vehicle crashes.
Critically, there can be many parties who should be held accountable for a construction zone accident, depending on the facts and circumstances of the case. For instance, if you were struck by another driver, they may be liable for negligence if they operated their vehicle in a careless manner. Other potentially liable parties can include the construction company, an equipment manufacturer, or the government entity responsible for maintaining the roadway.
Compensation for Construction Zone Accidents
A motor vehicle accident in a construction zone can result in catastrophic injuries that require extensive medical treatment and time off from work. Although no-fault benefits may compensate you up to $50,000 for your medical care and a portion of your lost wages, this may not be enough to cover the full extent of your losses. If you were injured in a construction zone accident due to the negligence or carelessness of another, you may be entitled to compensation by pursuing a personal injury lawsuit.
By filing a personal injury action, you may be eligible to recover both your economic and non-economic damages. While economic damages are meant to cover things like your unreimbursed medical bills, lost wages, and out-of-pocket costs, non-economic damages compensate for the pecuniary losses incurred by an accident victim. Also referred to as “pain and suffering,” this category of damages compensates for the physical pain and mental anguish you experienced in connection with your injuries.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
Construction zone accidents can be complex. It’s vital to have a skillful personal injury attorney who knows how to investigate your claim and can maximize your compensation. Due to our deep knowledge, skill, and commitment, the attorneys at The Edelsteins, Faegenburg & Brown, LLP regularly obtain substantial settlements and verdicts in the millions on behalf of clients who have suffered serious injuries in construction zone motor vehicle accidents.
The Edelsteins, Faegenburg & Brown, LLP is a personal injury law firm committed to fighting for the rights of accident victims to ensure they get the monetary recovery they deserve for their injuries. Located in Manhattan, our firm has been handling personal injury cases throughout New York City since 1937. Call to schedule a free consultation at (212) 425-1999 today.