Unfortunately, potholes are a common occurrence throughout the Chicago area, and in the rural countryside of Illinois. Roadway weathering and wear and tear typically create potholes, when the top layer of the road asphalt wears away to expose the base below. Once a small pothole is created, rainwater accelerates the process and can quickly increase its size. With the extensive rainstorms, ice storms, and melting snow in Illinois, it is no wonder why a car accident in a pothole in Chicago happen so often.
Car, truck, motorcycle, scooter and bicycle commuters complain about the dangers craters, holes, pocks and pits in the roadway surfaces throughout the year. Late winter and early spring are especially susceptible to potholes when roadways, sidewalks, parking lots and private roads are susceptible to the freeze/thaw cycle.
A small pit or crack in the surface can absorb water over time. When the absorbed water freezes, it expands the small crack. When the water thaws, it allows the absorption of more water, which then re-freezes, expanding the hole even further. Without immediate attention, the freeze/thaw cycle and daily traffic can quickly increase the pothole’s size, making the damaged area extremely dangerous to commuters.Chicago Pothole Tracker For Motorists
Chicago and the city surrounding the metropolitan area are not without their major problems with potholes, many that have been neglected far too long. In an effort to alert the public of neighborhood potholes, the Chicago mayor’s office, in early 2014, began providing an online “pothole tracker” managed by the Department of Transportation. Motorist can view an updated list of pothole requests, the date it was filled and the road repaired. Unfortunately, the tracker does not contain every existing pothole, which can still lead to serious accidents involving extensive damage and injuries.Vehicle Damage Sustained In Potholes
Even a small pothole can cause significant damage to the car, and put a huge strain on its suspension and shock absorbers. A large hole in the roadway can actually cause damage similar to a car being involved in a 35 mile an hour accident. Even with ongoing roadway construction and repair throughout the area, there is a significant rise in the number of motorists experiencing a car accident in a pothole during every season of the year.Serious Injury Frequently Accompanying Accidents Related To Crashes In Potholes
A car accident in a pothole often occurs when the vehicle travels over a large pothole, and does not have the capability of handling the intense blow. The unexpected, sudden impact can cause the motorists to quickly lose control, causing a car accident where serious injuries are involved. When traveling at a high rate of speed, the car can easily be thrown into another lane traveling in the same direction or opposite direction, placing everyone in the vehicle at great risk of harm.Pothole Related Auto Accident Liability
The liability of any car accident caused by a pothole can be extremely challenging to determine. Chicago and surrounding municipalities are legally bound to repair and maintain proper highways and roadways, and ensure they are free of any defect or damage. Liability often results when the municipality or city had knowledge of a defect/damage, or should have had the knowledge, but failed in their abilities to remedy it.
In other situations where a driver causes a collision when attempting to maneuver around a pothole, a claim may be pursued against the driver who causes the collision. Even in circumstances where a driver claims that they had no choice but to drive around a pothole, a claim can generally be asserted against them for their failure to keep a proper lookout.
It is often best to use the skills of an experienced attorney when filing a claim against an Illinois municipality in a pothole car accident case. Often times, the pothole location will determine if it is the county or the city’s responsibility. Once responsibility has been determined, the attorney will then need to prove that the city or county had knowledge or should have had knowledge of the pothole.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers understand the best legal approaches to a pothole car accident case. The attorneys can establish negligence by the city or county and develop an effective strategy to receive financial compensation for the property damage and any injuries involved. The lawyers can sort out at-fault liability, recovery, insurance claims, and the amount of appropriate compensation deserved by all victims of the accident.
Consult with Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers at (888) 424-5757 or fill out our online contact form before attempting to file a pothole claim against a government entity. The attorneys can protect the rights of all victims and ensure fair compensation for the damages, pain, suffering and injuries endured as a result of a neglected pothole or irresponsible driver who contributes to an accident.