Road Hazards are Dangerous


Road hazards in Toledo need no introduction. Most of us have experienced the dangers they pose while driving. From uneven roads and construction zones to potholes, debris, and slick surfaces, these hazards can cause terrible accidents. Despite our caution, accidents still occur. In fact, in 2022, out of over 14,000 accidents in Lucas County, Ohio, nearly 4,000 were caused by road hazards. This means that road hazards contributed to over 28% of all accidents in the county. They are a significant factor in accidents in Lucas County.

Determining blame and financial liability in car accident cases involving road hazards is often challenging. It depends on factors beyond negligence, including the involvement of private or government entities. In such cases, seeking the assistance of a car accident lawyer can help clarify the details.

When it comes to promptly repairing road hazards, it is the duty of the city or county. If they fail to do so, you may have grounds for a lawsuit due to negligence, either by the government entity itself or a private contractor working for them. However, navigating this process is not always easy. Moreover, Ohio Revised Codes §§ 2744.03, 04, and 05 impose certain immunities and damages caps that shield governments from negligence-based liability. These restrictions are generally more limiting than those governing private contractor liability for government services.


Claims Against the Government


If a car accident is caused by potholes or debris on a public road, liability may lie with the state or municipal government responsible for road maintenance. However, governments often use “sovereign immunity” to limit liability or shift it to a private contractor. In Ohio, a claim must be filed within two years with the Ohio Court of Claims [O.R.C. § 2743.16]. Failure to file a notice of claim within this period waives the right to bring a subsequent claim.

Claims Against a Private Party



Accidents caused by road hazards in Toledo, where the private party is at fault due to negligence, such as cargo falling from a truck onto a highway or improperly marked road construction zones by a contracted maintenance company, are subject to general principles of accident injury law. Under O. R. C. § 2305.10, the statute of limitations for filing an injury claim in civil court is two years from the date of the accident.

The legal principle of respondent superior also holds the road contractor’s workers (or the trucking company’s employees in the given example) liable for their harmful acts when performing their normal duties of employment. To establish a claim against a road-contracting employer based on the respondent’s superior, the injured plaintiff’s car accident lawyer must demonstrate that the negligent employee caused the accident during the scope and time of their employment.

If you have been injured in a car accident caused by road hazards in Toledo, the car accident attorneys at Gallon, Takacs & Boissoneault can assess if you have grounds for a claim and against whom. With over 60 years of experience, we have been protecting injured accident victims in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan. Contact us at 419-843-6663 for a free consultation or fill out our online contact form.