Who is Liable for Automobile Accidents Involving Pot Holes?

Damaged areas on the road, including large potholes, become a risk for traffic accidents.

During bad weather, you will often see a lot of potholes on the roadway. Once the top layer of the asphalt is worn away, it exposes the base below it, creating a pothole. While a pothole can begin very small, rainwater can accelerate the damage and the pothole can quickly increase in size. Bad weather is the main reason that leads to the formation of potholes, crates, and pits on roadways, parking lots, private roads, and sidewalks, often leading to deadly car accidents.

Even the smallest pit or crack formed in the surface can absorb water over time and expand, allowing more water to be absorbed and thus expanding the hole even more. The damaged area on the road becomes a huge risk for traffic and requires immediate attention.

Vehicle Damage Due to Potholes

No pothole should ever be neglected, regardless of its size. The Department of Transportation has the responsibility to track and repair any pothole that appears on the road.  Even a small pothole can lead to serious damage to a vehicle, damaging the suspension and shock absorbers of the vehicle. A large pothole can be even more dangerous and may cause the same extent of damage as would occur in a car accident at 35 miles per hour.

Potholes Accidents Leading to Severe Injuries

A large pothole on the road can lead to a car accident because of the vehicle’s inability to handle the strong impact. Often times, a driver encounters a pothole unexpectedly and may lose control over the vehicle. The risk is even greater when traveling at a high speed, because hitting a pothole at a high speed can throw the vehicle in the way of another vehicle traveling either in the same lane or in the opposite lane. Such an accident can cause severe injuries and even death.

Liability for Pothole Accidents

It may be difficult to determine liability in case of a car accident that occurs due to road potholes. Although it is the municipalities’ responsibility to detect and repair potholes, they sometimes fail to do so. However, in a situation when the accident happens because of a driver who tries to avoid the pothole and causes a collision, you may be able to pursue a claim against the at-fault driver for negligence.

St. Louis Car Accident Attorney

If you have been involved in a car accident caused by a pothole on the road, contact an experienced St. Louis car accident lawyer from The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. We can help you file a claim against the municipality or the driver responsible for the accident and receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Call us at (314) 361-4300 today.


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