If you’ve been in an accident caused by potholes in the road you may be entitled to claim compensation.
But before you do, you need to do the following to substantiate your claim.
Take a photo
Providing it’s safe to do so and your injuries allow you to, take a photo of the pothole. The photo will serve as proof that the road was dangerous in order to make a claim.
You need to be rather meticulous when taking the photo, paying attention to its surroundings. You need to able to show the scale of it. If you have one to hand use a tape measure to show length, width and depth or place a recognisable object next to it. If you can’t do this straight away, return to the site as soon as you are able to. This is because the local authority is likely to repair the damage on the road soon after the accident is reported to them.
When making a claim it’s not uncommon for councils to claim that potholes were not present when the road was last inspected, which is where witnesses can be a big help.
People who live or work close to the area where your accident occurred may be able to provide an accurate account of how long the potholes have been present and how the condition of the road has changed over time.
A witness will also be able to testify in the case of the council claiming they were unable to repair the pothole prior to the accident due to circumstances beyond their control, for example, bad weather.
A witness may be able to undermine their argument, giving your claim more weight.
If the local authority denies liability for your accident you will need to obtain copies of the council’s records.
You will need to get hold of the records which show reported accidents or potholes in the area, when inspections were made and the outcome of those inspections.
This can help to prove the council were aware of the problem and is proof of negligence as they should have remedied the condition of the road prior to your accident. A solicitor that specialises in personal injury claims will know exactly how to approach the local authority regarding these records and ensure the right information is produced.
Local authorities, motorists and other road users are protected by law to ensure their safety on the roads. If a car, bike or scooter accident wasn’t your fault and we can prove you were injured because of the negligence of someone else or that blame does lie elsewhere, we can pursue a personal injury compensation claim on your behalf.