legal blog

Do Hazardous Conditions Affect a Chicago Car Accident Case?

Written by Jared Staver

Read Jared's Bio

Jared Staver is a Personal Injury Lawyer based in Chicago, Illinois and has been practicing law for over 20 years.

Jared Staver

CATEGORY: Auto Accidents


When poor road conditions in Chicago lead to an accident, you may wonder how it impacts your personal injury claim. Determining liability for these types of crashes can be complicated. Depending on your case, there are different ways that fault and compensation could be affected.

Finding a trusted Chicago car accident lawyer to examine your case and determine your next steps is critical if you are injured after a car accident because of hazardous road conditions.

What are Hazardous Road Conditions?

Many accidents happen when motorists behave recklessly, like driving while intoxicated or distracted. However, roads can become unsafe for reasons beyond a driver’s control.

Hazardous conditions are factors that impact your ability to drive safely, such as:

Adverse Weather

Chicago is well-known for its lake effect and harsh winters. Unfortunately, bad weather can contribute to car accidents. Around 1.2 million car crashes in the U.S. are weather-related each year.

If a road is slick with ice or rain, drivers can lose control of their vehicle and hit another car, object, or pedestrian. Heavy rain, snow, or fog can also create poor driving visibility.

Poor Infrastructure

Road infrastructure refers to the physical streets and their associated assets, such as signs, crosswalks, bus stops, and more. Hazardous infrastructure conditions occur when a roadway system, structure, or accessory threatens driver safety.

Examples may include:

  • Obstructed stop or yield signs
  • Missing speed limit signs
  • Landscaping that blocks a driver’s view
  • Broken traffic lights or traffic signals
  • Lack of warning around construction work zones
  • Improper maintenance of potholes and other hazards
  • Faded or nonexistent lane markings

To prevent a crash during unsafe driving conditions, drive cautiously and stay informed about Chicago construction updates and weather warnings.

Liability for Hazardous Road Conditions

If Chicago driving conditions led to your crash, your lawyer can collect and evaluate evidence for your case to determine who is liable. Liable parties must compensate you for damages the collision caused.

Who Is Liable in a Weather-Related Crash?

Figuring out who is at fault in a weather-related crash might seem challenging. After all, Mother Nature can’t be held liable for any damages. However, most of these cases act like any typical accident: the driver who failed to uphold their duty of care is considered at fault.

Everyone is expected to drive safely regardless of weather conditions. Drivers should move slowly, use low-beam headlights, and keep a safe distance to stay safe. If a driver fails to take necessary precautions, resulting in an accident and damages, that individual can be held liable.

Who Is Liable in an Infrastructure-Related Crash?

Liability could extend to other parties if your accident was caused by poor infrastructure. If you sustained damages after driving over a pothole in the road, you might hold the City of Chicago or its employees liable. You can file a claim through the Office of the City Clerk.

In other instances, a company outside a government entity can be held liable. Construction or trucking companies can potentially pay for your damages if any hazards they created—such as falling debris—contributed to your accident.

However, like weather-related accidents, you still have a duty to drive safely. Trying to prove reasons outside your control caused your accident can be an uphill battle.

Receiving Compensation for a Hazardous Road Conditions Case

When poor road conditions contribute to your accident, you can work to claim total compensation. Your Chicago personal injury attorney can guide you through the process and help secure the maximum amount you are owed.

Depending on who is liable, you may be able to recover damages for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Your lawyer can help calculate the amount you are owed, collect evidence, and fight for you to obtain full compensation.

If you want to hold another driver or a third party liable, you must prove negligence.

Attempting to get compensation in a claim against the city of Chicago or a trucking company can be difficult because they will have a bigger budget and a legal team working for them. A fearless attorney can help you determine the best route toward success and take your case to court if necessary.

How a Staver Car Accident Lawyer Can Help

Defensive driving can protect you and others from harm, but accidents can happen regardless. If Chicago driving conditions contributed to your crash, there are essential steps you can take. Our dedicated team at Staver Personal Injury Lawyers, P.C. can evaluate your individual case and work diligently to help you file a claim, handle insurance, and fight for what you deserve.

Contact us online or call (312)736-0784 today to schedule a free consultation.

Free Consultation
(312) 236-2900
(312) 236-2900
Skip to content