The state of the roads and cycle paths can pose a hazard to cyclists and vehicle drivers alike – and we have some advice if you’ve suffered an injury on your bicycle due to the poor condition of the road.
Cycling Claims Against The Highways Authority
If your accident has been caused by a pothole or poorly maintained road, you can make a claim against the Highways Authority.
According to section 41 (1) of the Highways Act 1980, the local authority has a duty to maintain the highway. This is why a claim is usually made under the Highways Act when there is a defect in the road.
However, under section 58, the authority is not liable if it can prove care has been taken to inspect, maintain and repair that part of the highway and that it was not dangerous for traffic.
Factors the court will consider when a cycling claim is made against a local authority, include:
- The condition of the part of the road where the accident happened
- Whether the condition of the road was reasonable
- If the authority knew or could have been expected to know that the road condition was likely to cause danger for cyclists and drivers
- If warning signs had been displayed when deemed reasonable and the authority could not have been expected to repair the road before the accident
Cycling Claims Against The Landowner Or Other
If debris in the road caused your accident, then it’s likely you can make a claim for negligence against the responsible person – be that a builder after an item fell from a nearby building site; a landowner whose petrol spillage leaked onto the road; or a farmer whose object fell from a tractor and landed in the road. However, you would need to be able to prove who was responsible for debris on the highway.
It may still be possible to claim for negligence if you’re unsuccessful with your initial claim under the Highways Act.
Cycling Claims Against The MIB
If your cycling accident was caused by debris in the road, such as something falling from a construction site or a spillage in the road or an object falling from a lorry, and the individual responsible for the item involved in the incident can’t be traced, then a claim can be made under the Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB) Untraced Drivers Agreement.
For a claim against the MIB to be successful, it’s important you report the accident to the police straightaway or there’s a risk the MIB won’t consider the claim.
How We Can Help With Cycling Claims
Our professional personal injury solicitors have the experience to help with a range of cycling claims and will work hard to establish the cause of your accident and how best to proceed.
Whether your cycling accident happened because of a pothole in the road or debris on the road, we will help you make a cycling claim under the Highways Act or to claim for negligence against the responsible party.
To help with your claim, take a photo of the scene of the accident – but only if it is safe to do so. It’s important to highlight the condition of the road and the depth of any defect if you can, as well as any signs that show who may be responsible for the accident. Check whether local businesses have CCTV or if there are any witnesses and report the accident to the local council or landowner as soon as possible.