Tulsa Work Zone Car Accident Lawyers
Holding drivers, construction site owners, and others liable for accidents in or near Oklahoma work zones
Work and construction zone accidents are complicated because the responsible defendants include more than just the drivers. The construction site owners or the state may also be liable. These accidents are also complex because the right to file a claim depends on who is injured. Employees usually file a workers’ compensation claim. Every other injured person files a negligence claim.
At Biby Law Firm, our Tulsa work and construction zone accident attorneys understand why these collisions happen and who can be held liable. We work with investigators, the police, and reconstructionists to help prove liability. Our lawyers work with your doctors and your family to fully understand how serious your injuries are, what medical care is needed, and just how much you are suffering.
According to a 2019 Oklahoma Department of Transportation report, “1,348 people were injured in 1,047 collisions in Oklahoma work zones in the past five years, and 65 people were killed.”
Why do work zone accidents in occur in Tulsa?
Work zones are busy and confusing. They disrupt normal traffic patterns, and add a lot of extra vehicles – and people – to the roads. The more common reasons for work zone crashes include:
- Lanes that are poorly marked. Poorly marked lanes lead to confusion as to which lane to drive in and when new lanes are available.
- Fatigued driving. Many times traffic will slow near construction zones. If drivers are fatigued, they may not react to the changing traffic conditions. Major collisions can occur in this situation. Some of the worst collisions occur because of fatigued driving in construction zones.
- Merging accidents. Many accidents occur as lanes narrow or the number of available lanes decreases. Cars often aren’t clear which vehicles have the right of way. Merging can be difficult if there are large trucks occupying other lanes.
- Uneven surfaces. Often the level and type of surface at construction sites changes. The grade can also change making it easy for a driver to lose control of his/her vehicle.
- Bad weather. Fog, ice, snow, sleet, rain, and sun can add to the confusion for the driver as to which lane to drive in and where the work is being done.
- Debris and dust. Construction sites often leave tree branches, soot, oil, and other objects on the road that can make navigation difficult.
- Speeding and distracted driving. Many accidents occur at construction sites because speeding drivers and drivers who are talking on their phones realize too late that traffic has slowed and that the lanes are changing.
- Tailgating. As the traffic slows and the lanes narrow, drivers who drive too close to cars in front of them may cause a rear-end collision.
Who is responsible for a road construction accident in Tulsa?
When a car collides with another car, a truck, a pedestrian, or non-moving objects, the following entities may be responsible.
- The driver. Drivers do have a duty to obey warning signs and to be aware of their surroundings. Drivers who run through stop signs, speed, drive while distracted, or are negligent in other ways may be liable for any injuries or deaths they cause.
- The construction company. Construction companies and safety management companies have a duty to prepare their site for drivers. They need to follow OSHA laws and building codes. They can be negligent if they:
- Fail to warn oncoming drivers of a construction zone within a certain distance
- Fail to monitor traffic especially if only one lane is operable
- Fail to create barriers which can direct drivers to the correct lanes
- Leave other vehicles or equipment where those items pose a danger to any drivers that pass by
- Government entities. Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation, Tulsa, and other government units may be liable if they failed to properly inspect and monitor the construction site.
Other entities may be liable too, such as repair and maintenance crews.
Who can file a work zone accident claim?
Anyone who is not an employee of the road construction companies can file a car accident claim. This includes drivers, passengers, and pedestrians who are hurt. The families of anyone who is not an employee can file a wrongful death claim if the collision results in a death.
Construction employees generally are required to file a workers’ compensation claim against their employer if they are hurt in a car accident. However, independent contractors would have to file a personal injury claim, and employees whose injuries are caused by a third-party, or whose injuries are catastrophic may wish to file a personal injury claim.
What kinds of injuries are caused by Tulsa work zone crashes?
A collision in a work zone can lead to serious injuries, including:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord damage
- Partial or full paralysis
- Hearing or vision loss
- A heart attack or stroke
- Internal organ damage
- Neck, back, and shoulder damage
- Soft tissue injuries
- Cuts, bruises, and lacerations
- Crushing injuries from falling objects (tools, pieces of bridges/overpasses, machinery)
If you were hurt because of road construction work, contact Biby Law Firm today
It’s important to contact a skilled car accident lawyer as quickly as possible after a work zone accident. A Biby Law Firm, we move quickly to investigate the accident site, speak with witnesses, and determine who we think is liable. We work with your doctors and employers to verify and detail your pain and suffering, your medical bills, your lost wages, and any other income losses such as a diminished earning capacity. For help now, call our Tulsa construction zone accident lawyers at 918-574-8458 or use our contact form to schedule an appointment. We represent work zone and construction accident victims on a contingency fee basis. We proudly serve all of Oklahoma including the communities of Broken Arrow, Bixby, Claremore, Jenks, Sand Springs, Sapulpa, Wagoner, Muskogee, and the surrounding areas.