When temperatures drop below freezing during a Massachusetts winter, and precipitation accumulates, the result can be a dangerous one: black ice. Every year, people and cars alike slip or skid while walking or driving on a patch of this hard-to-detect ice. If you are involved in a black ice car accident in Massachusetts, how is fault determined? Who is liable for the crash? Here’s what you need to know:
If You Cause the Accident, You’re To Blame
Many drivers think that being held responsible for an accident that occurs on black ice is unfair, believing that the accident was out of their control. Unfortunately, however, when you get a driver’s license in Massachusetts, the law assumes that you know the risks of driving in different weather conditions, and that you are able to handle your vehicle regardless of weather. If you make the choice to drive when black ice on the roads is possible, then you are assuming the risks of the conditions, and also assuming liability if you cause an accident as a result.
That being said, if another driver causes the crash, then that driver will be to blame. In order to determine fault in crash involving black ice, a thorough investigation will need to be opened that analyzes witnesses’ reports, crash reports, photograph evidence, physical evidence, and more.
Are There Any Other Parties Who May Be Held Liable?
In some cases, it may be possible to hold another party – other than yourself or the driver of the other vehicle – liable for an accident that happens on black ice. This is the case when the presence of the black ice was the result of a property owner’s failure to remove it.
For example, consider a situation where you skid in a parking lot on black ice, hitting another car. Later, you learn that the property owner knew that black ice was present, yet failed to take action within a reasonable amount of time to remedy the situation (i.e. putting down ice melt) or warn of the situation (such as blocking off the icy patch with cones). In some cases, a government entity may even be liable if it had a legal duty to remove ice and snow, yet failed to do so.
Work with an Experienced Black Ice Car Accident Lawyer to Improve Your Case’s Chances
Black ice can ruin your day, and have a huge impact on your future if black ice causes a serious accident. If someone else’s negligence was the cause of your black ice car accident – such as a driver who was driving at an unsafe speed, or a property owner who failed to remedy the ice in a reasonable about of time – then you may have a claim for damages.
To learn more about how to file a black ice car accident case in Massachusetts, contact the talented car accident attorney at the law office of Deborah Gold-Alexander, Attorney at Law. Deborah Gold-Alexander has over 30 years’ experience and can help you to seek the compensation you deserve after a crash. Reach our law office now at 781-289-4235.