Michigan Pothole Woes
I feel like all you hear about lately are potholes: potholes here, potholes there, potholes are everywhere.
But what gives? And who is responsible? Generally speaking, the owner of the road is responsible for potholes, but it’s not always so easy to point the figure of liability because oftentimes the system has been set up to protect against lawsuits.
If the government, municipality or county road commission has jurisdiction over the highway, they have the duty to keep it safe. The only problem with that is the government, generally, is immune from tort liability.
What is a tort? A tort is a civil wrong other than a breach of contract claim for which the law has a remedy. It’s your everyday personal injury claim you hear about.
Back to the government being liable: the government is responsible for unreasonable, dangerous defects in the highway if they knew or should have known about the defect. Guess what? That statute is narrowly tailored, and that means the government is not responsible when it fails to remove a natural accumulation of ice and snow.
A problem is that one can construe the natural accumulation of ice and snow and further that argument to potholes, which are a direct flowing cause of ice and snow.
Those dang Michigan winters are fighters. You’ve seen the roads; they’re brutal.
The roads aren’t getting any better, which means you need to buy a bigger car (maybe a monster truck) or do that routine weave on your way to work dodging those big ole’ holes in the ground.
Goodwin & Scieszka doesn’t always have an answer. There’s one thing we do know: if you’ve been injured in a car, motorcycle, bus, truck, snowmobile, bike, or other motor vehicle accident, our Southfield, Michigan personal injury firm is here for you.
We’ve been fighting for Detroit and Metro Detroit for over 30 years. If you’ve been injured, contact our firm. We’ll help you solve your problem and get you back on the road to recovery.