Repair of a public road is typically the responsibility of the local Highway Authority, which may be part of your unitary, district or county council. There are, however, some exceptions.
When Highway Authorities are not responsible for the repair of a public road
Repair of a public road may, however, be carried out by other authorities. Some roads or sections of road, like a railway level crossing, for example, may be looked after by other bodies.
The Highways Agency, complete with a variety of private contractors, is typically responsible for major roads, including trunk roads, and motorways.
Repair of a public road: reporting hazards
Defects and potential hazards can be reported to highway authorities by members of the public. Accuracy is of high importance when reporting hazards or defects, as every authority works on a different timescale depending on the danger a possible hazard may pose.
Possible risks of poorly maintained roads
Motorcyclists and cyclists are particularly at risk of sustaining personal injuries in motorcycling or cycling accidents involving potholes, cracked or loose and uneven road surfaces. Car drivers can also be at risk. A large, deep pothole, for instance, could cause a tyre to burst, which may cause a motoring accident by causing the vehicle to swerve.
Swerving to avoid a large branch or fallen tree could also result in a vehicle collision.
When hazards are not dealt with
If you are hurt in a traffic-related accident caused by a fallen tree immediately after a storm, when there has been no time for anyone to report that tree, or remove it, for that matter, there is little that can be done about it.
If, on the other hand, you sustain an injury in a road traffic accident caused by a defect or hazard on the road that has been reported some time ago but still not dealt with, you could be entitled to claim compensation.
What to do next
In any case, it is important to gather some evidence to support your claim. This evidence should include photos of the scene of your car, cycling or motorcycle accident and the hazard that caused it, as well as:
- Witness statements
- Details of any other drivers involved
- Statements by attending police and emergency services personnel
You should also make sure your injury is seen to by medical professionals.
Boasting over 15 years’ experience in handling car crash claims, our Accident Advice Helpline traffic accident claim experts can help you get your compensation quickly and efficiently.
Call us now on 0333 500 0993 from your mobile, or 0800 689 0500 from a landline, to get your claim started.
Date Published: August 1, 2016
Author: Accident Advice