In the winter, black ice can form on roadways, creating an invisible hazard for drivers. At certain speeds, driving through black ice can be deadly.
If you suffered an injury or lost a loved one after colliding with a vehicle that slid on black ice, you have the right to pursue compensation. Call our Green Bay auto accident lawyers today to discuss your claim. The consultation is free, and there are no upfront fees for our services.
Below, we discuss how fault for black ice accidents is determined and what parties may be financially responsible for your damages.
How is Fault for a Black Ice Accident Assessed?
Negligence is the basis for most car accident claims. If negligence occurred, the victim may be owed compensation for damages. The victim must establish another party’s negligent actions caused an accident that directly resulted in his or her damages.
Black ice is a naturally occurring hazard. This could make it easier for the liable party to deny fault. However, the central issues in a compensation claim are the actions of the individual and how those actions affected you.
As a driver, you are owed a duty of care by those who share or maintain the road. Breaching that duty is generally considered a negligent action. Some examples of negligent actions that could prove fault for an accident include the following:
- Distracted driving
- Following too closely
- Inattentive driving
- Not having the right kind of tires
- General failure to control vehicle
What Parties May Be Liable for My Damages After a Black Ice Accident?
Drivers are usually the liable parties for black ice accidents. As a driver, you owe others who share the road a legal duty to take reasonable precautions behind the wheel to avoid an accident. This means that a driver who speeds, follows other cars too close or breaks traffic laws is most likely financially liable for your damages.
A driver may also be liable for damages if he or she did not maintain his or her vehicle properly. For example, if the vehicle’s tires are underinflated. Low tire pressure makes it more difficult for a vehicle to stop, even when pumping the brakes. Worn tire tread could also play a role in a vehicle losing traction on black ice.
Inaction is also something that could make a driver liable for your damages in a black ice accident. For example, if the driver fails to take the necessary steps to help his or her vehicle regain traction, such as pumping the brakes or steering into the skid. Even a driver who is unaware of how to help the vehicle regain traction may be liable, as ignorance does not excuse negligence.
What Types of Accidents May Occur Due to Black Ice?
Black ice is an invisible hazard that can form on almost any road. However, it is typically more common in areas where the temperature is cooler as too much sunlight can keep the ground warm enough to prevent the formation of ice. Black ice often forms in the following areas:
- Roads beneath an overpass
These areas usually have higher speed limits since they are often on highways and interstates. The faster vehicles are traveling, the easier it is for their tires to lose traction when they hit ice. When this happens, the following types of collisions are more common than others:
- Rear-end – These crashes can happen because black ice can make it more difficult to come to a full stop.
- Sideswipe – Drivers may try to steer into the skid to regain control of their vehicle and end up in another vehicle’s lane.
- Head-on – If a driver loses control, he or she could end up on the wrong side of the road in the path of oncoming traffic.
It is common for black ice to also cause multi-vehicle pile-ups, which can cause significant damage.
What Types of Injuries May Occur Due to Black Ice?
The severity of injuries from a black ice accident can range from minor to severe. It just depends on the type of accident and the force of the impact.
Some of the most common types of black ice accident injuries may include the following:
- Back injuries
- Neck injuries
- Head injuries
- Broken bones
- Penetrating injuries
Black ice accidents can also cause fatal injuries – even with immediate treatment brain injuries or internal injuries could lead to death.
What Are My Options When Pursuing Compensation After a Black Ice Accident?
If you were injured or lost a loved one in a black ice accident, you have the right to pursue compensation from the liable party.
In cases when another driver is liable for your damages, you can file a claim against his or her liability insurance to recover compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and other damages. If the other driver was not insured or was underinsured, your own insurance coverage may be applicable to cover your damages.
Schedule a Free Consultation. Call Us Today
Our attorneys have decades of experience handling accident cases and have helped numerous clients recover the compensation they need.
Let us handle the legal process on your behalf while you focus on recovering from your injuries. There are no hourly fees for our services. We work on a contingency basis, meaning we only get paid if you do.
The consultation is free and confidential, and there is no obligation to take legal action.
Call (877) 888-5201 today.