When cyclists think of accidents, primarily they think of accidents involving other motorists. While this is the most common type of cycling accident, motorists that do not know how to share the road with cyclists aren’t the only cause. Often there can be not another car in sight, but an accident can still happen. In these cases, often it is road hazards that are to blame.
A “road hazard” is a broad term that can cover a lot of different incidents. However, most commonly a road hazard accident is typically caused by:
- Potholes – Potholes are dangerous to all those on the road, but particularly so to the cyclist that is unaware of them. Holes caused by construction should be clearly labeled and marked off while potholes caused by long-term wear to a road can mean that those in charge of maintaining roadways are negligent.
- Sewer Grates – In many cases, sewer grates are safe to ride over thanks to efforts to make them so. However, older sewer grates lack the crosshatch safety features, making it so the grates run in the direction of travel. This, as you can imagine, is an easy trap for cycling tires.
- Rail Tracks – Rail tracks can be rough on motor vehicles and dangerous to cyclists as well. As rail tracks create uneven pavement, it can dramatically affect the balance of a cyclist or even trap the relatively thin tires of a bicycle. This danger becomes even worse if the tracks are poorly maintained.
Who is Responsible for Road Hazard Accidents?
When it comes to cycling accidents that were the fault of road hazards, often liability can be placed on many different parties depending on the unique facts of the case. Liable parties can include the state, county, city, or any public agency therein that is responsible for maintaining the roadways.
Unfortunately, unlike an accident with a motorist, liability can be difficult to assign in these cases. This is why it is crucial that you contact a lawyer as soon as possible. Cycling advocates like Gary Brustin will go over the unique factors of your case to make sure you get the justice that you deserve.