Call FREE from a Landline or Mobile on 0800 634 75 75

Highways Claims

I dodged yet another pothole on the way to work this morning – it’s getting to be rather tedious if I’m honest. OK, so I know the councils budgets are rather stretched thanks to the giant pair of scissors that are David Cameron’s hands; but something needs to be done about it. In fact, if anyone watched Channel 4’s Selling Off Britain on Monday night, you might agree that there is room for a bit of financial redistribution to help us sort out the meteor craters littering our roads.

But – Where does the genuine duty lie? What are the councils and highways authorities responsible to do? You’d be tempted to say “naff all” given the current state of the roads; but there is a duty there.  Under the Highways Act 1980, local authorities responsible for the highways have an important duty to ensure that the highway is reasonably and regularly inspected and maintained. What is classed as “reasonable” is largely down to the authorities themselves; they can range from monthly inspections, to three monthly, bi-annually, or even annual only inspections. It’s all about what is deemed to be reasonable and practical.

If a pothole or defect is reported, the rules change a little. The council now must make the area safe – either by reparations or cordoning off of the area etc, as soon as is reasonably possible. Again, that lovely ambiguous word “reasonable” is in there. How this can be measured is hard to tell. At the end of the day, it’s likely the local authority will put forward the “public purse” argument as to why they are not able to satisfy the safety of highway users.

So, what happens if you end up injured due to a pothole in the road / path, or a defective manhole cover, defective kerbing, or any other hazard out there on the highways? If the responsibility of whatever caused you injury lies with the local authority, you are probably in for a tough time. It’s best to seek the advice of a specialist injury lawyer right away – but as a warning for you now, if the council can prove they have kept up with their inspection and maintenance regime that they have deemed to be reasonable and practical, it’s likely you won’t have a claim.

The authority can rely upon a special defence known as Section 58 of the Highways Act – this means that if they can prove they have kept up with their inspection and maintenance regime, they are not liable to compensate you. This means in times of pothole perils like now, where several defects have popped up from the ground following a harsh winter, there are a lot of unhappy claimers who have been subject to having their claims refuted.

If you are the victim of a defective manhole cover, the law is in some way similar. It depends on who is responsible – if it’s the local highways authority or council (i.e. public sector), it’s likely it may fall under the same category as above. If it’s privately owned, say, by a water or power / gas company, you may have better luck, as they may not have any kind of system or regime in place. If a manhole is not secured properly or adequately, and it is allowed to be tampered with, you may have a claim.

We are specialist personal injury lawyers with a vast wealth of experience in dealing with all types of claims for personal injury. We won’t lie to you or give you false hope – at the end of the day, any lawyer can only act within the law. In a highways claim, you have the odds against you. So it’s always best to enlist the assistance of a fantastic, specialist injury lawyer – it’s the only we you can be guaranteed a chance of a successful claim.

Request A Call Back

Your Details
Accident Details
Select Your Call Back Time
NHS Email Leak
Search Our Blog
Free Instant Valuation
As Seen on TV
Latest Blog Posts

My GP wont refer me - help!

My GP wont refer me - help!

A failure to be referred for treatment or more investigation is one of the common types of medical negligence claims we help people with here at The Injury Law...

Published on the 15/01/2016


Several commuters injured in Reading Railway Station escalator accident

Several commuters injured in Reading Railway Station escalator accident

According to news reports, more than 40 people have been injured at Reading Railway Station at around 7:30am at platform 14 during the busy commuting hours on Wednesday 6th January 2016. ...

Published on the 15/01/2016


Clinical negligence: A failure to refer

Clinical negligence: A failure to refer

One of the most common types of medical negligence compensation claims that we help victims for, involve a failure by the NHS ...

Published on the 21/12/2015


Can a UK lawyer fight your accident abroad claim?

Can a UK lawyer fight your accident abroad claim?

The short answer is: yes! It does however depend on a number of factors like where the accident happened; how it was caused; and perhaps most importantly, how your trip abroad was arranged. The ...

Published on the 21/12/2015


55 Patients suffered horrific side effects of 'unnecessary' chemotherapy and kept in the dark for six years

55 Patients suffered horrific side effects of 'unnecessary' chemotherapy and kept in the dark for six years

News reports have emerged about allegations against two doctors practising under the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust who allegedly administered extra strong doses of chemotherapy to patients who apparen...

Published on the 20/10/2015


Coloplast A/S - temporary suspension of CE certification for Testicular implants and inflatable vaginal stents

Coloplast A/S - temporary suspension of CE certification for Testicular implants and inflatable vaginal stents

Our Medical and Product Lawyers have a lot of experience in fighting for the rights of those affected by medical device recalls and claims. We have acted for a large number of victims of the PIP breas...

Published on the 20/10/2015


Public Liability - a quick guide!

Public Liability - a quick guide!

It is clear that any person who occupies a property owes a duty of care for the safety of any person who legally uses the premises. In places such as shops, restaurants, high street service branches, ...

Published on the 06/10/2015


Manual handling at work - a quick guide!

Manual handling at work - a quick guide!

If you have found yourself having to manoeuvre objects at work, and as a result you injure yourself, we may be able to claim compensation on your behalf. As it stands, the law is clear that your em...

Published on the 06/10/2015


The Provision and Use of Equipment at Work - Quick Help Guide

The Provision and Use of Equipment at Work - Quick Help Guide

Over the years at The Injury Lawyers, our specialist team have been dedicated to securing maximum compensation for employees injured through the use of equipment at work. Any employee who is involv...

Published on the 06/10/2015


CE safety certification removed for Silimed implants

CE safety certification removed for Silimed implants

Just three years after the PIP breast implant scandal which saw thousands of people claiming worldwide, another major investigation in to implant safety has been launched. The Medicines and Healthc...

Published on the 25/09/2015


Categories
Archives