Construction zones, also known as work zones, can be dangerous areas for both drivers and workers, especially on highways. In 2019, there was 762 fatal construction zone crashes across the United States.
It is important to understand construction zone safety and know what to do if you’re involved in a work zone crash.
What is a Construction Zone Accident?
A construction or work zone accident occurs when the first harmful event happens in a marked zone area. An accident that begins in a construction zone is considered a construction zone accident, whether workers are present or not.
Causes of Construction Zone Accidents
Typical causes of construction zone accidents include:
- Missing cones or barriers.
- Driver inattention.
- Lack of speed warning signs.
- Incorrect signs or no signs.
- Hazardous road conditions.
- Poor lighting.
Typically, either the at-fault driver or possibly a construction contractor is held liable for a construction zone accident. A construction company can be held liable if it failed to make a construction zone safe and/or failed to warn drivers of dangers that may exist. A few examples of construction company negligence include:
- Lack of warning signs or inaccurate signage.
- Construction routes creating a hazard by forcing drivers to make sudden moves.
- Direction signs not clearly visible.
- Failure to properly train workers.
- Unreasonably narrow roads.
- Construction equipment left in the road.
- Dangerous movement by highway workers or construction vehicles.
- Failure to direct traffic when necessary.
A driver may be held liable if:
- The driver hits a warning sign or equipment, causing a crash.
- He/she rear-ends a car that properly slowed down.
- The driver was distracted and missed the warning signs.
It can be difficult to determine liability in these types of accidents, so it is important to call an experienced construction zone accident attorney. If you or someone you love has been involved in an accident in a construction zone in South Carolina, please contact our award-winning legal team today by scheduling a free consultation or calling us at (803) 888-2200.
South Carolina Construction Zone Crash Statistics
According to the latest available data from the South Carolina Department of Public Safety, there were over 3,000 accidents in work zones across SC in 2018 alone. Of these, 22 were fatal and resulted in 24 deaths.
A majority of these collisions occurred in active shoulder and median work zones. Over half of the collisions occurred while workers were not present.
If you were involved in an accident in any part of a construction zone in South Carolina (before the first signal, in the advanced warning area, transition area, activity area, or termination area), contact our team today at (803) 888-2200 to discuss your case at no cost. Your first consultation with an experienced lawyer at Cavanaugh & Thickens is always free of charge.
What to Do After a Construction Zone Accident
- First, seek medical attention. Your main priority following an accident is getting immediate medical attention. The health and safety of you and those around you come first.
- Take as many photos of the scene as possible. If you’re able to, take pictures of the scene and everything around it. This includes property damage, nearby signs, the construction zone, any witnesses, police officers, etc. This can be very helpful in determining liability.
- Get a copy of the police report. After working with the police and recounting the accident, ask for a copy of the accident report. Also, get the officer’s contact information.
- Contact our office. We will take on the legal aspects of your case and fight to get you the compensation you deserve following a work zone accident in SC.
- Finally, be careful when communicating with insurance companies. After an accident, no matter where it happens, an insurance agent will contact you. The agent will try to take a recorded statement of the accident and use everything you say against you to minimize or even deny your claim. Do not give a recorded statement, and do not accept the first settlement offer. Instead, contact an experienced accident lawyer to help get the full compensation you deserve.
Contact an Experienced Construction Zone Accident Attorney
After an accident in a construction zone, it is critical to hire an experienced construction zone accident lawyer. We help individuals and families who have been affected by the negligent acts of others every single day – it’s what we do. Our award-winning lawyers can help you get through this challenging time. Schedule a free consultation to discuss your rights, secure critical evidence, and learn more about your options. Get the peace of mind and transparent guidance that you deserve.
Author: Joseph O. Thickens
Joe is a founding member, partner, and personal injury attorney at Cavanaugh & Thickens, LLC. He has previous experience working at a defense firm where he focused on personal injury cases including auto accidents, slip and falls, defective products, truck accidents, and more. In addition, Joe has handled numerous cases involving insurance coverage and bad faith. He uses this experience to assist individuals whose claims have been denied or who have received lowball settlement offers from their insurance companies.
Learn more about South Carolina Personal Injury Lawyer Joseph O. Thickens.
Disclaimer: The opinions and ideas in this article are for informational purposes only and are not intended as legal advice. Each case is different and evaluated based on its own particular facts and merits.
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