As the nation’s roadways and infrastructures age and get rebuilt, it is increasingly common to see road construction crews at work, performing maintenance and renovations. Though this work is important and necessary, it can pose a threat for motorists.
Construction companies and their workers have a responsibility to act safely by making it safe for drivers to pass through. When these sites are not properly marked, motorists can become confused and not know where to go. Signs that point out lane closures, sudden stops, narrowed lanes, and uneven pavement should be placed ahead of the hazards so drivers have enough time to react. Lane markings and road hazards should also be clearly displayed for drivers. Merges are common at road construction sites; these too should be well indicated.
Once repairs are underway, drivers should slow down when approaching. Those that do not can end up swerving to avoid workers, closed lanes, signs, and construction equipment.
Road construction contractors must follow safety protocols when setting up their work zones. All barriers, including guardrails, should be properly placed, and there should be no equipment, debris, or other hazards in the roads. When driving construction vehicles and using equipment, the utmost care should be used. All machinery should be in good working order, and only be used by trained personnel. Workers should understand how to direct and guide traffic, especially if a construction truck is backing up or when cars need to be detoured. The construction site must also be cleaned up once work is completed. Leaving debris, potholes, uneven surfaces, and other hazards behind can lead to serious accidents.
Companies are legally responsible for keeping their work zones safe. In addition to poor setup, by not keeping the job site safe while work is underway, they may be faulted for leaving poor road conditions if the construction was negligent or not adequately maintained. A company could be held liable if their negligence leads to an auto accident in their construction work zone. In some cases, an employee may be at fault for driving a construction vehicle into another car or directing a driver the wrong way. Other causes for liability include defective construction equipment that caused a fire or if an oil spill caused passing cars to skid and crash.
Drivers can also be partially or fully responsible for road construction zone accidents. Negligent actions, such as rear-ending a car that is stopped, speeding and crashing into a construction vehicle, or ignoring clearly marked signs can lead to cases of driver liability. Oftentimes, local and state governments are involved with these projects, so they may be partially liable for accidents that result from negligent road work.
Construction zones present significant hazards for drivers. If you were injured in a road construction zone accident, the Asbury Park car accident lawyers at Fox & Melofchik, L.L.C. can help. For a free consultation, call us today at 732-493-9400 or contact us online. Located in Eatontown, New Jersey, we represent clients in Monmouth County, Ocean County, Middlesex County, Mercer County, Asbury Park, Neptune, Long Branch, Keansburg, Ocean Township, Eatontown, Red Bank, Middletown, Colts Neck, Deal, Freehold, Holmdel, Jackson, Little Silver, Marlboro, and Rumson.