Increase in Traffic Leads to More Dangerous Roadways in Georgia


March 29, 2011

Dangerous roadways in Georgia are a common cause of motor vehicle accidents. Debris, uneven road surfaces, loose objects, wet pavement, and poor road construction design all contribute to dangerous roadway conditions.

Motorists expect roads and highways to be kept in a reasonably safe condition. They expect their hard-earned tax dollars to be put to good use. Unfortunately, dangerous roadways are often the cause of catastrophic accidents that take lives or cause life-changing injuries.

There are several basic types of roadway accidents that are construction and maintenance related:

  • Accidents resulting from the construction of a bridge, road, freeway or an on-ramp or off-ramp
  • Accidents resulting from an inherently dangerous road design
  • Accidents resulting from improperly timed traffic signals
  • Accidents where there are too few or no traffic signs at all

With the increase of cars and drivers on the road each year, there is a resulting increase in the need for construction repair to fix and repave old, worn-out roadway surfaces, bridge overpasses, and roadway expansion by adding new lanes to existing freeways, highways and roadways. The public entity implementing construction work has a legal obligation to maintain, construct and design its roadways in a manner that provides reasonably safe travel for the public.

Dangerous roadways can result from the failure of those managing construction projects to post necessary and visible warning signs or traffic cones and other construction signage that warns pedestrians and vehicle operators that construction is under way. Improperly designed roadways are the result of numerous serious injuries and wrongful deaths each year. Danger lurks where there are sharp curbs that lack proper grading, missing guardrails at freeway ramps, inadequate barrier space separating opposing traffic lanes and the lack of construction signage warning of ongoing construction. These are conditions that may not be apparent even to an individual who exercises due care for his or her own safety.

A public entity can be held liable for causing injuries due to dangerous conditions on its property, especially if it failed to foresee and reasonably anticipate the conditions under which an accident could happen while knowing the conditions existed. A public entity is expected to take preventative measures before an injury occurs. In cases alleging dangerous roadways or property conditions, a public entity may assert the defense of “design immunity.” The public entity’s defense must prove three things: (1) the cause of the accident was due to project design; (2) prior to construction, there was discretionary approval; (3) the reasonableness of the design was supported by substantial evidence.

It is extremely difficult for a layperson in Georgia to ascertain liability where dangerous road conditions may have existed. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in an accident where the construction or design of a road or bridge is in question, you should contact the experienced Georgia personal injury law firm of Montlick and Associates. We work hard for our clients in their best interests to obtain full compensation for any medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, disability and other appropriate damages.

It is important to keep in mind that time deadlines apply to all legal matters, and failure to take the required actions in a timely fashion will result in the loss of your right to make a claim. That is why it is always important to consult with an experienced Georgia personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after an injury.

The Atlanta auto accident attorneys of Montlick and Associates is available to assist clients throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Category: Auto Accidents

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.