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Accidents in Construction Zones

Road work/construction, in all its forms, is essential to keep our roads clear and safe and minimize traffic. Unfortunately, however, construction zones often pose their own risks to driving. Incorrect/inadequate signs and the confusion they cause can lead to accidents, for example, and debris and machinery in poorly-maintained zones also pose serious risks.

In 2010 alone, as many as 87,000 car accidents in work-zones occurred, 580 of which resulted in deaths (according to the Federal Highway Administration). This equals about 1.6 deaths per day in work-zone accidents across the United States, while the four most dangerous states in this respect are Texas, Georgia, California, and Florida. It’s also important to note the common nature of these accidents: about 70% of these accidents involve a construction worker being struck by a vehicle.

Of course, state transportation departments across the nation are ready with their suggestions for drivers moving through construction zones, chief among them being: avoid changing lanes unless absolutely necessary; refrain from tailgating and “road rage” of any kind; minimize all distractions, such as cell phones and loud music; and always keep an eye out for all construction equipment and workers anywhere within the work-zone.

The defendant in a claim involving a work-zone accident may be another driver, the city, county, or state responsible for the construction, or a combination of these, depending on the nature of the accident. While suing another driver after an accident is a relatively straightforward process, filing suit against a municipality requires special consideration. Under “sovereign immunity,” some suits against the government may be barred even if a city, state, or its employees were negligent and an individual was injured as a result. States vary in their approaches to this principle, and Illinois uses “state claims acts:” these statutes generally limit the state’s immunity, establish procedures for claims against it, establish a board, commission, or court to determine these claims, and may limit damages which can be recovered.

Although accidents in work-zones are often due to a combination of factors, accidents due to direct negligence also occur. For the most thorough evaluation of your accident, who was responsible, and what damages may be recovered, it is imperative to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible.

If you or a loved one has been injured, contact the Chicago construction accident attorneys at Mike Agruss Law for a free consultation. We are a Chicago-based injury law firm representing individuals (and their families) who have suffered an injury in an accident. We will handle your case quickly and advise you every step of the way, and we will not hesitate to go to trial for you.

Lastly, Mike Agruss Law is not paid attorney’s fees unless we win your case. Our no-fee promise is that simple. You have nothing to risk when you hire us – only the opportunity to seek justice.

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