While utility poles serve many different purposes, they can be dangerous and deadly in single-vehicle crashes. The primary function of a utility pole is carrying electrical wires and communications-related cables. Although utility poles are important, they can cause severe injuries and carry an increased risk of death. Injuries caused by utility poles in single-vehicle car accidents vary from head injuries and broken bones to back and spinal cord injuries. With more than 88 million utility poles across the United States, it is not surprising that these poles are often involved in fixed-object crashes that cause injuries and fatalities. Each year, utility pole collisions cause approximately 1,100 deaths and 60,000 injuries in the U.S. Thus, approximately 40% of collisions involving utility poles involve some kind of injury.
Liable Parties in Utility Pole Accidents
Typically, drivers do not drive into utility poles on purpose. There is usually the “first harmful event” that happens prior to the utility pole crash. The nature of this first event can determine whether the victim has a valid personal injury claim. In some accidents, crashing into the utility pole occurs later in a chain of events. If another party’s negligence caused you to lose control of the vehicle and veer off-road to collide with the utility pole, you might be eligible to recover damages. Let’s review different types of utility pole collision scenarios in which other parties could be held liable:
- If another motorist caused you to brake or steer abruptly, he or she might be held liable in a negligence claim;
- If you crashed your vehicle into the pole due to a defective tire or faulty brakes, you might have a valid product liability claim; or
- If your utility pole crash occurred due to defective road design or poor road maintenance, you might be able to sue a government entity.
There may be other examples of liability in utility pole collisions. Determining fault in single-vehicle crashes depends on many facts. If you believe that someone else is to blame for your utility pole crash, contact a car accident lawyer from Roberts Law Office. Call at (859) 231-0202 to recover damages from the at-fault parties.