Can You Still Sue When A Motor Vehicle Injury Accident Occurs In Bad Weather?
As Buffalo residents, we are all used to occasionally having to drive in bad winter weather, and Buffalo personal injury lawyers frequently deal with cases where a personal injury accident occurred on icy roads or white out conditions. When a personal injury accident occurs in bad weather conditions, it is not unusual for representatives of the driver who caused the injury to claim to the personal injury attorneys involved that the weather was beyond the driver’s control and, as a result, he or she was not negligent in causing the injury.
Bad Weather is No Defense
New York courts, however, have consistently found that bad weather is no defense when a driver could have reasonably anticipated the poor conditions that led to the collision. In most cases, a driver was aware of the general weather conditions prior to the collision and chose to continue driving. Problems such as ice patches or drifting snow are foreseeable during bad winter weather and do not negate a driver’s negligence in causing a motor vehicle accident.
This does not mean that weather-type conditions can never negate a driver’s negligence. Where a situation or condition could not have been reasonably predicated, it is possible for a driver to be found not to have been negligent. For example, in a case where a driver caused a collision when making a turn and suddenly being blinded by the glare of the sun, it was determined that the jury should have been told that this may be considered an “emergency situation” that would negate the negligence of the driver.