Can You Claim For a Pothole Accident?
Potholes seem to be increasing due to Council and Government cutbacks. Under the Highways Act, the Government has a LEGAL DUTY to make sure all our public roads and pavements are safe and free of any defect that could give rise to a claim if someone is injured.
Potholes are usually caused by water ingress into the tarmac and with the expansion of water when frozen then defrost makes the surface brittle and prone to gaps and breakage. Over time the surface begins to decay.
Not every pothole that can cause damage to a motorbike or motor vehicle can be actionable in the sense that a claim for compensation can be made. As with anything in law, it ‘depends on the facts of the case.’ What this means is the extent of the defect of the pothole.
Generally speaking, a Council will be held liable for any damage to a bike or car if the pothole is greater than 40 mm deep – that is the height of two 20p coins. If it was a defective pavement slab, it is the ‘one inch rule’ that is the defective pavement is 1 inch or more below the surrounding pavement slabs.
Acting as motorbike accident solicitors, if there is only vehicle damage (with no injury) you are better off taking action yourself unless the damage is worth over £10,000. It will be classed as small claim and solicitors costs are not recoverable even if you win.
If you have been injured in a pothole accident, then a claim for compensation can be made in which we can recover not only your compensation for your injuries but also damage to your motorbike as the damage to the bike and the injuries can be claims.