A car accident can often be caused by a missing or improperly positioned road sign. If you can prove who is at fault for the missing sign, you may have a claim against the liable party and be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries and any damages that resulted from the accident.
The Dangers of Missing Road Signs
Road signs exist to keep drivers safe and to alert them to various road conditions; guide them and warn them; and regulate traffic flow. Accidents can happen if a road sign is missing or hidden from view:
If a stop sign is missing at an intersection, a driver may fail to stop and cause an accident.
A driver may go down a one-way street in the wrong direction and collide with another vehicle head-on if the one-way road sign is missing.
If a warning sign is missing, a driver may be unaware of a sharp curve ahead and hit a guardrail.
Without a construction zone road sign, a driver may be unaware of the construction ahead. They may fail to slow down or might drive into a hazardous situation.
How to Prove Your Car Accident Case
If you can prove that your car accident was a direct result of a missing road sign, you can hold the municipality where the sign was installed or the company responsible for maintaining the sign responsible. Before making a claim, you will need to have evidence that proves that the accident was caused by the missing sign.
If you were involved in a car accident and think that a missing road sign is to blame, consult with an attorney who can help investigate the crash and gather the necessary evidence to prove liability for your accident and injuries.
Some evidence that can be used to prove liability includes:
- Copy of the police report documenting that a road sign is missing
- Photos of your vehicle and accident scene showing the exact location of where the missing sign should be
- Names and contact information of any witnesses to the accident
You will also want to call and report the accident to your insurance company. Once you have a claim started, an attorney can handle the necessary communication to help ensure you receive a fair settlement for your damages.
Parties to Hold Liable
If it is determined that the missing road sign was the cause of your car accident, you need to prove liability. The following parties may be held liable:
The local government’s municipality may be responsible for maintaining road signs. They may hire a private company to help maintain these signs, but if a road sign is missing or no longer visible, the municipality would need to notify the private company to replace or repair the sign. If the municipality fails to do this and an accident happens as a result of a missing road sign, the municipality may be the party held liable.
Sign maintenance company.
Often, a sign maintenance company is responsible for installing and maintaining road signs. If they are the ones in charge of making sure that the road signs are visible to drivers, they could be liable for accidents that occur due to a missing or obstructed sign.
In some cases, the missing road sign may have been the result of theft. If identified, the person who illegally removed the sign could be held responsible. If the missing sign was gone for a long period of time and the municipality or sign maintenance company did not make an attempt to have it replaced, they would be negligent in this situation.