Lake County Inclement Weather Accident Attorneys

Car driving through snow and fog

Inclement weather is harsh weather that causes conditions to be unsafe, undesirable, or not optimal. Because weather affects every aspect of people’s lives, inclement weather can and often does lead to serious traffic accidents. When this happens, it can be complicated to discover who is responsible for the losses involved.

If you or someone you love has been injured in an inclement weather accident, compensation may be available for your losses. Our experienced inclement weather accident lawyers are ready to meet and fight to hold the responsible parties liable for compensation. For a free consultation, contact Stein & Shulman LLC today. 

Personal Injury Claims and Inclement Weather Accidents

After a standard car accident, the insurance company of the at-fault driver will receive a claim for damages. However, what happens when the weather is to blame? Who compensates the car accident victim when inclement weather played a major role in the accident?

Situational Negligence

Inclement weather creates dangerous conditions that require drivers to adjust to the current situation. Failure to do so can be deemed as negligence. In other words, the existence of bad weather only means that the standards of negligence shift slightly.

For example, if the speed limit on a city street is 40 mph, it is reasonable to drive up to 40 mph. However, if that same street is covered in snow and allows for only very low visibility, it is likely negligent to drive at 40 mph. 

Other inclement weather conditions that can alter the way drivers must behave include:

  • Fog
  • High winds
  • Rain and other forms of precipitation

In most cases of inclement weather, drivers must slow down to remain safe. When high winds are a factor, drivers with negligently tied loads or unsafe vehicles often cause crashes. Crashes are also caused by SUVs and other high-centered vehicles driving unsafely in windy conditions. 

Regardless of the condition, the rules of the road and negligence require motorists to adapt to the situation and drive only in a safe manner. If this means creeping along the highway at slow speeds, then speeding will most likely cause an accident. Other types of general negligent traffic behavior are:

  • Driving while drunk or on drugs
  • Operating a vehicle while distracted
  • Failure to yield or stop
  • Following too closely
  • Aggressive or reckless driving

Sometimes, however, inclement weather can lead to numerous parties being involved in an accident. In these cases, each party’s actions must be scrutinized for negligence. In Illinois, the standard of modified comparative negligence is used. 

This means that accident injury victims can seek damages even if they were partially responsible for the accident. However, the victim may not recover any damages at all if they are found to be 50% or more liable for the incident.

For example, if a blizzard causes a pile-up, the injury victims’ attorneys will work diligently to gather evidence of liability. In their investigations, they may find that only one vehicle is really to blame for the accident, which unfolded like a chain reaction. They might also find that one or more of the victims played a role in the accident. 

Whatever they discover, the attorneys will fight for the most optimal percentage assignment for their clients, which may be 0% or as high as 100%. Every case is unique. At Stein & Shulman, we fight to ensure that all parties are held accountable to the extent they deserve.

Roadway Maintenance and Inclement Weather

Sometimes, motorists are not to blame for inclement weather accidents. Instead, negligent road construction is the cause. Road contractors have the essential function of installing and maintaining roads in a safe manner. 

Sadly, shortcuts, design flaws, and installation flaws lead to unsafe roads made much more dangerous by inclement weather. Results of road construction negligence made more dangerous by inclement weather include:

  • Improper traffic sign placement
  • Improper anchoring of traffic signs
  • Failure to maintain road
  • Use of improper building material
  • Failure to use proper signs or notifications
  • Lighting problems

If a government agency is responsible for building or maintaining a street or road, then their victims may be able to seek compensation from the agency. However, there are special rules and procedures when suing governments in Illinois. 

Time Limit for Inclement Weather Accident Claims

A statute of limitations of two years governs personal injury cases in Illinois, including those involving inclement weather accidents. After an accident, you are strongly advised to seek compensation as soon as feasible to protect your financial interests. 

Contact Our Experienced Inclement Weather Attorneys

Our team of inclement weather accident lawyers has decades of combined experience between them. We are ready to help you pursue what you are owed so you can address the consequences caused by your accident.

For a free consultation, contact Stein & Schulman, LLC and take a big step toward compensation. An experienced inclement weather accident attorney is ready to discuss your case.