In Toronto, there may be the likely possibility of car accidents involving icy roads due to inclement weather. There are areas in the north of the province where the roads are not as well maintained as the more populated areas. The significant temperature changes that occur between seasons have a tremendous effect on the roads.
The changes create potholes, affect ice formation, and there is wear and tear generally on the road surface. Toronto car accidents involving icy roads can have serious consequences, and if you have been involved in one, you should seek compensation to help your recovery. An experienced accident lawyer can fight for your rights to recover damages.
Our car accident lawyers can meet with you in Toronto for a free initial consultation. Call (416) 364-2000
Preventative Measures and Warning Signs
The avoid car accidents involving icy roads and poor weather conditions in Toronto, it is important for someone to pay attention to the weather forecast. They should also pay close attention to road closures with respect to each individual municipality and if they do not have to leave the house during a weather event, then they should not.
Snow tires in Toronto are not yet mandatory, but they can help against these conditions. Individuals should drive pursuant to the weather conditions, giving a lot of room to the vehicle in front. If a driver is following too closely, they should let them pass.
Frost on the outside of the window or ice formed on the outside of the window are both common warning signs that there may be ice on the road. If there are large temperature changes overnight with freezing temperatures involved, this may indicate poor driving conditions. The general rule is, if there is ice on the vehicle then there is a good chance that there is ice on the road.
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Following an Accident
After being involved in a car accident triggered by icy roads in Toronto, an individual should try to get to an area of safety.
If a person can safely get off the roadway and away from the highway to some warmth, then a person should do so but if a person cannot do so safely, then they must remain in their vehicle try to get out of the pathway of the traffic and call 911. Seeking medical treatment is an essential first step following an accident.
The damages in Toronto car accidents involving icy roads are the same as those sought in any other accidents where injuries occur. In Ontario, an individual must have suffered an injury which causes a permanent serious impairment which affects the individual’s ability to carry on a normal life. This is referred to as the threshold. If this threshold is met, then the individual may be entitled to damages for pain and suffering as a result of the injuries sustained in the accident.
There are many other heads of damages potentially recoverable, such as lost income, other economic losses, loss of a chance, loss of competitive advantage in the workplace, or other out of pocket expenses and costs for future treatment etc.
There are also situations where other family members who were not directly involved in the accident may be entitled to damages under the Family Law Act.
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If people are not driving pursuant to the condition of weather, then there is a higher likelihood that there will be a car accident. Regardless of the weather conditions, drivers are responsible for maintaining control of their vehicle at all times.
There are situations where, conditions are such that a driver who caused an accident, caused the accident because of the presence of black ice, for instance. If so, then there may also be a need to sue a municipality or a private winter maintenance company as bearing some liability for the accident.
Each case is specific to the circumstances of each accident. This is why it is so important to record information at the time that the accident occurs for a lawyer to utilize later on.
Cases Without Another Vehicle
How a lawyer proceeds with a case if there was not another vehicle involved in a Toronto accident involving icy roads will depend. In Ontario, there is something called gross negligence for claims against a municipality for an accident because of failure to properly maintain a roadway. This is another reason why collecting information at the scene is so important.
The lawyer’s role is to collect information from the municipality as soon as possible with respect to when they last attended the area and when maintenance was last conducted and to determine whether this meets their obligations under the law.
The standard is not perfect, so it is important to call a lawyer as soon as a person is in an accident in order to ensure information is collected in a timely manner.