Per Legal Blog Watch: A California motorist, seriously injured in a nighttime car accident in which she was a passenger,
ended up with a $1.6 million settlement from San Diego County after the driver of the car plunged off an embankment instead of following the road when it curved left.
Lawyers for the plaintiff stated that after the road was realigned in 1992 to curve left, the realignment created an optical illusion that the road continued straight. The plaintiff maintained that drivers would see a traffic signal, flashing lights and headlights in the distance straight ahead, fooling them into not realizing the road curved sharply left. The plaintiff was also able to show that there had been six collisions within seven years at that site. The
Google Maps image that Legal Blog Watch posted with added notations is really helpful in seeing where the problems existed.
In January, 2011, the county erected a large fence, flashing lights, and signage with warnings to counter any optical illusion. The modifications to the road were part of the settlement agreement.
Pursuing a claim or lawsuit against a county for car or truck accidents caused by construction or roadwork, unsafe conditions created by county road workers, or for defects in a completed roadway aren’t easy cases to litigate and usually require one or more experts, but they can be successful and absolutely worth the time, energy and expense to obtain justice for those injured or tragically killed.