Pothole Injury Claims Solicitors
Potholes are road surface depressions created by wear and tear, or by poor construction.
Over time, these small fractures can worsen and become hazards that pose significant risks to all road users.
If you have been injured as a result of a pothole-related accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Potholes on highways, car parks, and motorways can endanger pedestrians and drivers, damage vehicles, and cause road accidents. To qualify for a claim, a pothole typically needs to be at least 2.5cm deep and 30cm wide.
If the pothole is on a public road, local authorities are responsible for resolving these hazards. However, due in part to council budget cuts and the high frequency of new potholes forming, these hazards can be left unrepaired for long periods of time. This can increase accidents and collisions on the road.
The pothole may have been caused by a utility company digging up the road or footpaths while carrying out repair work, or it might be on private property. In these cases the person or entity responsible will need to be identified in the early stages of the claims process.
Our team of experienced team of Personal Injury Solicitors is here to assist you in navigating the complexities of pothole accident claims and seeking the compensation you deserve. With our extensive knowledge in personal injury law and commitment to client satisfaction, we are dedicated to helping you recover from the physical, emotional, and financial consequences of pothole-related injuries.
If you, or someone close to you, have suffered physical or psychological harm, or experienced financial losses as a result of an accident caused by a pothole, then you could have a claim.
To find out whether you could have a pothole injury claim and what compensation you might be entitled to contact our expert Road Traffic Accident Solicitors today for a free initial consultation.
Why choose us?
Our personal injury solicitors have decades of experience with pothole accident claims.
From determining the likelihood of you making a successful claim, to valuing your potential compensation in a manner that reflects the full extent of the damages you have suffered and informing you of what to expect at each step of the process - our expertise can help to clarify your next steps.
To find out whether you could have a claim and how much you could be entitled to, get in touch with us today by calling us on the number at the top of this page or filling out our contact form.
Who is responsible for a pothole accident?
With an expanding population and a record number of vehicles on the roads, local authorities are often waiting too long to repair uneven surfaces and potholes, leaving highways, pavements, and footpaths in hazardous conditions.
Pothole-related road accidents can injure drivers, bikers, and cyclists and can cause damage to vehicles. If you were involved in a road accident which was caused by a pothole that your council had prior knowledge of but neglected to fix, then they may be liable for your injuries and any associated damages.
Typically, a claim for pothole-related injuries would be filed against either the local government, a utility provider or a private citizen.
Making a claim against the local council
Local authorities or councils are typically responsible for the inspection and maintenance of public pavements, roads and highways, as per Sections 41 and 58 of the Highways Act 1980.
In a reasonable amount of time, councils are expected to routinely inspect roads for damage and deal with any hazards that arise in their jurisdictions. Consequently, if you were injured due to a poorly maintained pavement or road, you could file a pothole accident claim against your local council.
Suing a company for damages
To perform sewage, water, electricity, gas or communications works, utility companies must frequently excavate the road or pavement. However, they do not always return the road to its original state, which is a common and recurring problem.
These businesses have a legal obligation to repair and replace any damage caused by their equipment. However, if they neglected to restore the road surface to the correct standard, you may be able to file a claim for pothole-related injuries against the responsible organisation.
Claiming against a property owner
If you were involved in a pothole accident as a driver or pedestrian on private property, such as a parking lot or apartment complex, the property owner, not the local government, would be liable. The Occupier's Liability Act of 1984 details the owner's obligations and responsibilities.
In addition to a location where potholes can be reported, your Council must also have a system in place to inspect and rectify potholes.
A claim may not be valid if the council, company or private citizen can demonstrate that they exercised reasonable care and did not breach their duty. It is crucial that claimants collect as much evidence as possible regarding their accident, including photographs of the road's condition and the contact information of anyone who witnessed the incident.
Our expert solicitors will guide you through the process of gathering evidence, evaluating the circumstances of your accident, and building a strong case to establish liability. We will work diligently to ensure that your claim stands a strong chance of success.
What information do you need to make a claim?
After your accident, there are several steps that we recommend to improve your chances of making a successful pothole claim and getting the full amount of compensation you deserve.
Get any injuries looked at by a doctor as soon as possible.
Even minor injuries can develop into more severe conditions later on. Seeking medical support will ensure that your injuries are treated promptly and are not allowed to worsen. Moreover, your injuries will be documented and you will have evidence of them on your medical record, which will be useful when making your claim.
If it is safe to do so, taking photos of a pothole immediately after your accident with an everyday object, such as a coin, for size reference is beneficial. This is particularly useful because potholes can only be deemed hazardous if they are at least 2.5cm deep and 30cm wide.
We also recommend taking photos of any relevant injuries and, where possible, all vehicles involved in the accident.
Gather contact information.
If someone saw your pothole accident, getting their contact information could support your claim. It is often worth getting any neighbourhood residents' and workers' opinions on the pothole as they may also be able to help determine how long the responsible party has allowed the pothole to worsen. You should also make note of the information of all implicated parties.
Not all CCTV cameras actually store footage after filming it, and most stored files will be erased soon afterwards. For this reason, we recommend obtaining this footage as quickly as possible if your accident was recorded on CCTV.
It is within your legal rights to request any recordings of an incident you were involved in.
Finally, recording any financial losses you may have incurred as a result of the accident will further help to support your claim. This includes any receipts or other documentation that can prove these losses. For example, receipts for additional childcare, travel costs, etc.
While compiling as much evidence as you can will help to strengthen your case, there are still several instances where your claim may be rejected - even if the pothole meets the required dimensions.
These caveats include:
- The third-party responsible for maintaining the road took all reasonable precautions to ensure that the road was safe for vehicles and pedestrians.
- The responsible party have a reasonable road inspection and maintenance system in effect.
- They had already initiated measures to address the risk.
- They were either oblivious of the pothole, or it had appeared after their last inspection and was not reported.
To give yourself the best chance of making a successful claim, seeking out expert legal counsel is key.
Do I have a legal right to compensation?
You may be entitled to compensation if you can prove that you experienced harm as a result of an accident caused by a pothole, and that the council, company or private citizen responsible for maintaining the road or pavement that the incident occurred on failed in their duties.
The only way to find out for sure is by seeking out expert legal advice.
If we believe that you could have a claim, we will base the value of your claim on the full extent of the harm you have experienced as a result of the pothole accident, including:
- What kind of injury or injuries you sustained, as well as their severity.
- The impact that your injuries will have on your life.
- The associated financial losses you have experienced.
To find out if you could have a claim, contact our experts and get personal legal advice from our specialist pothole accident solicitors.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a pothole accident, it is crucial to seek legal advice as soon as possible.
Contact Sheldon Davidson Solicitors today for a free initial consultation. Our compassionate and dedicated team of Road Traffic Accident Solicitors will assess the merits of your case, provide expert guidance, and work tirelessly to ensure your rights are protected and that you receive the compensation you deserve. Let our Personal Injury Solicitors handle the legal complexities while you focus on your recovery and well-being.