Hydroplaning occurs when a thin layer of water builds up between a car’s tires and the road. Since the tires lose contact with the road during a hydroplane, the car can skid, lose control, or crash. A car can become unpredictable when it begins to hydroplane, making it difficult for a driver to control the vehicle.
Wet pavement contributes to almost 1.2 million crashes each year. Some drivers fail to adequately account for bad weather by failing to properly maintain lights, failing to drive at a safe speed, or failing to leave a safe distance between cars.
Drivers can take precautions to prevent hydroplaning accidents by properly inflating their tires, replacing old tires, driving at a safe speed during bad weather, maintaining a safe distance, driving in a lower gear, and avoiding cruise control in bad weather. But even with all these precautions, the roads themselves can make conditions dangerous for drivers.
Family Wins $9.7 Million After Crash Occurs on Georgia’s I-16 When Car Hydroplanes on Highway
A jury in Twiggs County, Georgia awarded a family over $9.7 million after a man was killed on a Georgia highway. According to one news source, the man was a passenger in a car driven by his fiancée. According to the court’s opinion, they had been driving on I-16 on a rainy day in September 2007, when another driver came up from behind the couple’s car and hydroplaned. The man’s fiancée tried to move into the emergency lane, but before she could, the other car crashed into her vehicle, and both cars flew across the road. The man died soon after the accident from a brain hemorrhage.
The man’s family sued the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) as well as the other driver. The family alleged that GDOT was negligent because it failed to properly maintain the highway. The family said that the stretch of highway where the crash occurred was not sloped sufficiently to keep water from pooling on the roadway.
The case went to trial, and the jury found in favor of the man’s family. The jury found GDOT liable for $7.3 million and the other driver liable for $2.4 million. GDOT’s own documents showed that in that stretch of the highway and other stretches, the roadway did not meet the standard of a minimum slope of one-eighth inch per foot, which would have reduced the chance of vehicles hydroplaning.
Have You Lost a Loved One in a Car Accident?
If you have lost a loved one in a car accident, you should consult a car accident lawyer to determine what your rights may be. At the McAleer Law Firm, our attorneys diligently consider each matter and fight for what our clients are entitled to receive. We are willing to take our clients’ cases to trial, even the so-called low-speed or “low-impact” cases. This allows us to recover greater compensation for our clients because it is often only after a lawsuit is filed that accident victims get fair offers to settle their personal injury claims. Call the McAleer Law Firm at 404-622-5337 today for a free consultation.
See More Posts:
What You Need to Know About The Dangers of Running Off The Road, Georgia Injury Attorney Blog, August 8, 2016.
Taser Death Case Lands at the Supreme Court Prematurely, Georgia Injury Attorney Blog, August 1, 2016.