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Who is liable for accidents caused by road defects?

Car accidents in South Carolina occur for a number of reasons. While most that are reported seem to be caused by driver error or negligence, there are some that are caused by road defects. If a road defect is suspected in causing an accident, it is not uncommon for those involved in the wreck to wonder who can be held liable for the resulting damages.

Accidents that occur due to poor road surfaces, obstruction of the roadway, traffic light malfunctions or any other road defect can result in serious injury and damage to property. The physical, financial and emotional costs associated with such incidents can be overwhelming. Thankfully, legal remedies are available to those involved in accidents caused by these defects or oversights.

Premises liability claims can be filed against the city, county or state in which the accident occurred. These cases are far from simple, but, as road maintenance is provided by states, counties and municipalities, these government entities are not immune from liability when accidents occur due to the failure to adequately maintain roadways. However, certain requirements and specific liability rules do apply in these cases.

A South Carolina resident who has suffered an injury or loss due to road defects may be able to take legal action against the governing body responsible for the defect. An experienced personal injury attorney can review the facts of the case and help determine the best course of action to pursue. Cases that are successfully handled, whether litigated or settled out of court, can result in compensation for the monetary losses suffered as a result of the accident.

Source: FindLaw, “Premises Liability Claims Against the Government“, Accessed on Feb. 2, 2015

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