When a motorcycle accident is caused by road debris, it can be difficult to determine who is responsible for the damages. In most cases, the car or truck driver who left the road’s debris will be held liable.
However, there may be instances where the city or state is responsible for maintaining the roads and removing debris. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident caused by road debris, it is important to speak with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer at The Fran Haasch Law Group to determine who is liable for your injuries.
Types of Hazardous Debris on Florida Roadways for Motorcycles
There are many types of hazardous debris that can be found on Florida roadways. Some of the most common include:
- Potholes – Potholes can cause serious damage to motorcycles, especially if the rider is not paying attention and hits the pothole at a high rate of speed.
- Loose Gravel – Loose gravel can cause riders to lose control of their motorcycle and crash.
- Tire Pieces – If a tire blows out on a car or truck, the tire pieces can become airborne and hit a motorcycle rider, causing them to crash.
- Road Debris – Road debris can include anything from tree branches to construction materials. If this type of debris is not removed from the road, it can cause serious accidents.
- Construction debris – Construction debris can be hazardous for motorcycle riders. If you see construction ahead, it is important to slow down and be aware of the potential for debris on the road.
- Tarps – If a tarp blows off a truck, it can land on the road and cause an accident.
- Grass clippings – One of the dangers of grass clippings is that they can accumulate on the road and create a slick surface. This can cause motorcycles to lose traction and slide.
- Falling dirt and rock from dump trucks – Dirt and rock that fall from dump trucks can land on the road or hit a motorcycle rider, causing them to crash.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident caused by these types of debris, you may be entitled to compensation. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you investigate the accident and hold the responsible parties accountable for your injuries.
Common Causes of Road Debris Accidents
Many factors can contribute to a road debris accident. Most road debris accidents happen due to:
- Poorly maintained roads
- Lack of signage warning drivers of hazardous conditions
- Lack of barricades around construction zones
- Flying debris from vehicles
- Heavy traffic areas
- Unsecured loads on trucks
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident caused by road debris, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer to determine if you are entitled to compensation. An experienced lawyer can help you investigate the accident and hold the responsible parties accountable for your injuries.
What Kind of Damage Is Caused by Road Debris?
Road debris can cause a variety of different types of damage to motorcycles. Some of the most common include:
- Bent frames
- Tire damage
- Damaged rims
- Broken headlights
- Dented gas tanks
- Scratched paint
Who is Liable for Road Debris–Related Damages and Losses in Florida?
Under Florida law, drivers and vehicle owners that cause hazardous debris conditions on state roads are responsible for damages resulting from their negligence.
Certain debris such as tire treads or a mattress may be obstructing traffic for a while before FDOT receives notice and can remove it. Unfortunately, this means motorcyclists who crash into these objects may never find the responsible party.
Insurance Coverage for Motorcycle Debri-Related Accidents
If the responsible party isn’t located, you may have to rely on your insurance to compensate you for damages. How much you can recover and what is covered depends on the damage you, your vehicle, and other drivers involved in the accident have received due to the accident.
If you are struck by debris due to another vehicle’s tire blowing out or rocks falling from a truck, you may rely on comprehensive coverage to help pay for damages to your motorcycle and other personal property.
Collision Insurance Coverage
If the object was already on the road and it caused a collision with another vehicle, collision coverage will help you recover damages that occurred due to the crash.
If you can prove who caused the road debris, you can pursue the liable party’s bodily injury insurance for compensation. This includes injury and death.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage and Road Debris Crashes
If you have an uninsured motorist policy, you can use this policy for a debris-related accident where the liable party either drove off or is not identifiable. It is important to note that this coverage will require proof that the driver or owner caused the debris that gave you your injuries, the road hazard caused your losses, or that they don’t have the insurance necessary to cover your damages.
Should I Hire an Attorney for a Roadway Debris Accident?
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident caused by road debris, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer. An experienced lawyer can help you investigate the accident and hold the responsible parties accountable for your injuries. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact a personal injury attorney today for a free case review.
What To Do If Your Motorcycle is Impacted by Road Debris
If you have been injured in an accident caused by road debris, there are a few important steps you should take:
- Get medical attention immediately. Even if your injuries seem minor, it is important to get them checked out by a medical professional.
- Report the accident to the police. A police report can help investigate the accident and identify the responsible party.
- Gather evidence from the scene of the accident. This may include taking pictures of the debris, your injuries, and damage to your vehicle.
- Speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer. An experienced lawyer can help you investigate the accident and hold the responsible parties accountable. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
- Contact Your Insurance Company – After taking these steps, you should contact your insurance company to report the accident. Be sure to give them all of your information, including the police report, pictures, and any medical documentation. Your insurance company will then investigate the accident and determine how much they will cover.
Legal Penalties For Not Securing Items That Can Fall Off a Vehicle
A few states have laws penalizing drivers who do not adequately secure their load. Florida is one of at least 13 states that include jail time when something they were hauling resulted in serious bodily injury or death. The fine for a violation begins at $115.
Damages You Can Recover After Debris Related Crashes
The type and amount of damages you can recover after a road debris accident will depend on the severity of your injuries, the amount of damage to your vehicle, and other factors. Some of the most common types of damages that are recovered in these cases include:
- Medical Bills
- Lost Wages
- Pain and Suffering
- Property Damage
If you have been injured in an accident caused by road debris, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer.
Contact a Motorcycle Accident Attorney Today for Your Road Debris Crash
At The Fran Haasch Law Group, we support the Tampa Bay biker community personally and professionally. We understand personal injury law for motorcycle accident victims and have committed to protecting motorcycle rider rights.
We have handled numerous motorcycle accident claims in Clearwater, Palm Harbor, and Tampa and know insurance companies’ strategies to avoid rewarding full compensation.
If you feel you have been the victim of a motorcycle accident through no fault of your own. Our attorneys are prepared to help you navigate the legal process and work toward securing the maximum compensation you are owed. Call (727) 784-8191 or contact us online to get started on receiving maximum compensation for your personal injury case.