Often driving in Dayton on interstate 75 a motor vehicle driver will encounter roadway debris. This could be tire tread or a muffler or some other kind of object. If the person who caused the debris to be in the road is long gone then the question becomes:
Can the city of Dayton be liable for a car wreck caused by roadway debris?
In order to get the answer to this question a lawyer looks at statuatory law and case law interpreting the statue. Under R.C. 723.01 a municipality (city) must keep it’s streets from from nuisance. If the City did not create the condition then the city must have notice of the condition and time to fix the problem in order to be responsible.
Notice can be actual or constructive. Constructive notice means that the problem existed long enough that it should have been discovered. As a matter of law a condition that only existed for 17 minutes has been found to be too short a time to hold the city resposible. Hammons v City of Dayton
Conditions That Are Dangerous With Regard To City Streets
Some of the more common dangerous conditions are pot holes and malfunctioning street lights. A deep pot hole can
snap the steering suspension and cause a car to go out of control . The mere impact with the pot hole can also cause a car wreck. Another common problem is malfunctioing traffic lights such that cars meeting at intersections both have the green light.
One unusual case that I was involved with dealt with a construction site. Often these sites are controlled by the Ohio Department of Trasportation a state agency. Claims against the state must be brought in the Ohio Court of Claims. So it is important to determine which governmental entity has jurisdiction over the area where the accident occurred.
The case I am speaking about dealt with black out tape being used to temporarily cover the yellow fog line. The tape became slick within 30 days but was left out there over a year. A motorcyclist lost control because of the slick tape and was killed. Although within the city limits the issue was not nuisance but active negligence on the part of ODOT and the contrator Kokosing as well as the tape manufacturer.
About Anthony Castelli
Anthony Castelli has been a personal injury car accident lawyer for over thirty years practicing through out Ohio. He schedules office or home and hospital visits as necessary. Anthony offers free consultations and works on a contingency fee. He can be reached here in Dayton at:
Beavercreek, Ohio, 45440