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Can you hold the government responsible for a crash at a dangerous intersection?

On Behalf of | Jul 2, 2024 | Car Accidents |

In Lowndes County, residents have multiple modes of transportation available to them, be it walking, biking or driving. Unfortunately, some intersections, like one on Pineview Drive in Valdosta put people who are traveling at risk.

In May, a car collided with a teenage bicyclist at the intersection of Pineview Drive and Deborah Drive, leaving the teen in critical condition. This tragedy along with another car crash story at the same location one week later have renewed calls for improved road safety and city planning in the area. What should Valdosta car accident victims know about the role that dangerous intersections like these play in a personal injury claim?

Who could be at fault for a car accident in Georgia?

When someone fails to act responsibly, their negligence can directly contribute to accidents like collisions. When determining fault, several people or groups might be considered responsible:

  • The other driver: Often accidents happen because the other driver was speeding, not paying attention or not following traffic rules.
  • Injured people: Sometimes, the person who gets hurt might have also done something risky. In Georgia, even if you are partially at fault you can still get some compensation if you are less than 50% at fault.
  • The car manufacturer: If vehicle problem like a design flaw or manufacturing issue causes a car accident, the auto maker might be responsible.
  • The city or government: Bad maintenance or poor road design like confusing intersections or missing signs can all contribute to a crash. In this case, the government might be to blame.

Figuring out who is at fault can be complex. Depending on the circumstances, responsibility for a crash and any major car accident injuries that occurred can lie .

Why is it difficult to hold government entities responsible?

Unfortunately, suing the government over road issues is challenging because of a rule called sovereign immunity. This means that you cannot sue the government without its consent. Although there are exceptions to this rule, these laws often come with strict requirements and limitations.

Lawsuits against government bodies are also complicated because they follow different procedures than other types of lawsuits, such as different deadlines and limits on compensation. Navigating these rules requires a deep understanding of both state and federal laws pertaining to government liability.

How can an attorney help?

When you are dealing with complicated legal situations, a lawyer who knows about personal injury and traffic law can be extremely helpful. An experienced Valdosta accident lawyer can:

  • Review police reports, witness statements and other evidence
  • Find out whose actions led to a crash
  • Guide you through complicated legal issues, like sovereign immunity
  • Recommend the best strategies to follow.
  • Negotiate on your behalf
  • Present and argue your case in court
  • Manage deadlines and necessary paperwork

Overall, having a lawyer by your side can greatly reduce the stress and uncertainty that often come with traffic accident claims. While you may face many challenges in the aftermath of a collision at a dangerous intersection, understanding your rights and seeking skilled guidance can help you get the support you deserve.