Who is Liable in Work Zone Car Accidents in North Carolina?

Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matt Arnold answers the question: “Can I wait a few months to pursue a personal injury claim?”


North Carolina’s roads and highways often need repair and maintenance due to an ever-increasing number of motor vehicles, including trucks, in the state. That means that there is an increased possibility of car accidents in work zones.

In 2019 alone, there were over 7,000 work zone accidents in North Carolina. If you or your family member has been involved in a work zone crash, you might wonder, “Who can be held liable for an accident in a construction zone?

Consult with a skilled car accident attorney in North Carolina to determine liability in your work zone collision.


construction-sign-Charlotte-Monroe-Lake-Norman-Personal-Injury-Lawyer-300x225Liability in Work Zone Accidents

When an accident occurs in a construction zone on the road, the question of liability depends on which party acted negligently. Often, a thorough investigation and analysis are necessary to determine whose negligent actions caused a work zone accident.

While car drivers must exercise extra caution when driving in a work zone, construction zone workers and government agencies or private companies that carry out different types of work when repairing or maintaining the road must also act with reasonable care.


Who is Negligent in a Work Zone Car Accident?

As mentioned earlier, liability for a work zone car accident hinges on whose negligence caused or contributed to the crash. When a motorist, construction zone worker, or a government agency fails to exercise due care, and their actions result in someone else’s injury, that party is considered negligent.

Under North Carolina’s doctrine of contributory negligence, an injured person can be barred from seeking any compensation for the damages and losses if their own negligence contributed to the accident even in the slightest degree.


Potentially Liable Parties in Work Zone Accidents

There may be multiple potentially at-fault parties when a work zone accident occurs in North Carolina. For example, a driver could be held liable for the collision if they fail to maintain a safe speed and exercise extra caution when driving in a work zone.

Other causes of construction zone crashes include:

  • No detour signs posted;
  • Improper or unsafe traffic detours;
  • Inadequate or missing warning signs;
  • Improperly designed construction plans;
  • Defective or improperly used equipment in the work zone;
  • Debris on the road;
  • Improperly placed lighting; and
  • Construction equipment that blocks visibility.

It can be difficult to establish fault in a construction zone car accident in North Carolina, which is why it is essential to speak with a knowledgeable attorney.

Sometimes, a government agency, such as the North Carolina Department of Transportation, can be held liable for the work zone wreck. Most construction projects on North Carolina roads are managed and controlled by state and local government entities.

Those entities are responsible for inspections, maintenance, and signage in the work zone. If the entity is using private contractors, they may also be held at fault for causing a construction zone car crash.

It is advisable to seek help from an experienced car accident attorney to determine liability in your work zone crash. Our skilled North Carolina car accident lawyers at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, will help you investigate what caused your construction zone collision in order to prove another party’s negligence. Call (704) 370-2828 to receive a video or phone consultation with our lawyers to explore your legal options or fill out our contact form. Now taking cases throughout North Carolina with offices in Uptown Charlotte, Mooresville and Monroe.







The skilled personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC are dedicated to maximizing the financial recovery and obtaining justice for every personal injury client injured by another party’s negligence. The issues our personal injury clients may be facing include, but are not limited to, slip and fall injuries, wrongful death, product liability, catastrophic injuries, dog bite claims, car and truck accident injuries, motorcycle injuries, traumatic brain injury (TBI), nursing home negligence, spinal cord injury, boating accidents, and defective medical device injury. Our personal injury attorneys understand the devastating impact such an injury can have on a person’s life, and that the effects so often go beyond physical pain and suffering. The personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC are dedicated to helping clients determine the strength of their claims, and to aggressively pursuing the means necessary to achieve the best possible end result for each client’s particular situation.






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