Reclaiming Your Life after a Devastating Accident

Why A Driver May Still Be On The Hook For A Weather-Related Accident

by Stacy Dean

Just because a freak accident "caused" another car to crash into yours, it doesn't mean that the driver isn't liable for your damages. This is because even in a weather-related accident, there are still measures each driver can and is expected to take to avoid causing injuries, loss of lives or damage to property. Therefore, even if the accident occurred in a freak weather, the other driver can still be on the hook for your damages if:

They Were Driving at Dangerous Speeds

In an average day, any motorist driving above the speed limit is considered to be speeding. In inclement weather, however, the speed limits are temporarily suspended, so to speak, and motorists are required to drive at "safe" speed limits. In such situations, safe speeds aren't cast in stone, rather, each driver is expected to use their best discretion to avoid endangering road users.

For example, a speed of 67mph in a 70mph zone may be safe and legal when the weather is normal, but it is dangerous when the roads are icy. Therefore, a driver doing 67mph in such an area may be liable for your damages if they lose control of their car and hit you due to poor weather.

They Were Intoxicated

Intoxication makes driving dangerous at the best of times; it's even more dangerous in bad weather. For example, an impaired driver would find it more difficult to steer a car in strong winds than another motorist who is in full control of their senses. Therefore, if another motorist crashes into you in poor weather, you should investigate whether they were driving while intoxicated. If that turns out to be the case, and the intoxication is connected to the crash, then the other motorist won't escape liability just because of the poor weather.

Their Car Wasn't Properly Maintained

Every motorist is expected to take care of their car well and ensure that poor maintenance doesn't endanger other people's lives or property. That is why drivers are expected to maintain certain standards for windshield wipers, tire pressure, tire tread and other parts of the car. Some of these may not present any danger in clear weather, but they become extremely dangerous in bad weather. Take an example where a motorist fails to spot your car in time because it is raining and their windshield wipers aren't working optimally. In such a case, the motorist is clearly responsible for you damages.

Therefore, don't assume that you don't have a strong injury case just because it "seems" your car accident was caused by poor weather. Let the accident investigators and your car accident attorney determine if there is anybody you can hold responsible for your losses.