No matter how experienced a driver is or how cautiously he or she drives, construction zones are hazardous in nature. Both drivers and workers alike are at risk of being seriously injured. Did you know that thousands of collisions occur each year in construction zones across Ontario?
If you have been involved in a construction zone crash, you may be eligible to pursue compensation for your injuries and damages. There may be additional legal options available in these cases.
Our legal team at Greg Monforton & Partners is ready to discuss your rights during a risk-free, zero-obligation consultation. It costs nothing up front to have our firm represent you and no fees while we work on your case.
Learn how we may be able to help. Call: (866) 320-4770
Crashes in Construction Zones on the Rise
Ontario has seen a steady increase in construction zone-related crashes over the past several years. There is a lot more road construction especially in the springtime during warmer weather months. According to the most recent data provided by the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, there were 1,694 collisions in construction zones in 2013, which led to eight deaths and another 341 injuries.
Stricter laws and awareness campaigns have been implemented to keep workers safe. Under the Highway Traffic Act, the fines for speeding in construction zones when workers are present have doubled.
When approaching a construction zone it is important to proceed with caution, slow down to the posted speed limit and obey all warning signs. These are just some ways to stay safe and avoid a collision.
Legal Options if Hit in a Construction Zone
After a serious accident, an injured party’s only legal option is to sue the negligent party. For instance, if you are rear-ended, you may be able to pursue compensation against the at-fault party who hit you. The owner of the vehicle may also be liable if he or she knowingly loaned their vehicle to someone who drives recklessly. For minor accidents, you would need to go through your own insurer in order to be compensated for your injuries.
However, there may be additional legal options available if the collision occurred in a construction zone. If you are driving on a roadway, the owner of that roadway is known as an occupier. Any company or individual who occupies a property has a duty of care to keep their property reasonably safe for visitors.
If a construction company is hired to perform maintenance on a roadway, they too become an occupier of that roadway. This means that the construction company has a duty of care to keep the roadway they are working on reasonably safe for drivers traveling through it. If you are hit in a construction zone, you may have legal recourse against the construction company or one of its workers.
When a Construction Company May Be Liable
When a construction company fails to meet this duty, the company could be held liable for any resulting damages. Construction companies are also vicariously liable for the actions of their workers. This includes contractors and subcontractors. Ways a construction company may be to blame include:
- Failing to clear hazardous debris from the roadway
- Designing a route that forces drivers to make sudden maneuvers
- Failing to place proper warning signs
- Displaying signage with inaccurate information
- Failing to hire competent heavy machinery operators
- Moving construction equipment on the roadway without warning
- Failing to have a worker or competent worker directing traffic
The Negligence of Another Driver
Other times, the actions of another driver may have caused a construction zone-related crash. Ways in which he or she may be held liable include:
- Failing to slow down to the posted speed limit
- Failing to pay attention to visible warning signs
- Driving while distracted (i.e. texting or eating)
- Failing to follow signs and flag directions
- Failure to keep a safe driving distance
There may be certain instances where it appears that the crash was solely due to the other driver’s negligence when in fact the construction company may also bear some responsibility.
For instance, a driver swerves into your lane in order to avoid construction debris and causes a collision. Both the driver and construction company could potentially be held liable for your injuries and damages.
Our Firm is Here to Help. Call Us 24/7
If you have a valid case, our car accident lawyers based in Windsor are ready to help seek the maximum compensation possible on your behalf. We have four decades of experience fighting for the rights of injured crash victims, recovering millions in compensation for our clients across Ontario.
Reach out to our firm to schedule a confidential case review. There is no cost to meet with one of our lawyers for the first time to review your situation and discuss your potential legal options.
Find out if you have a case. Ph: (866) 320-4770