COVID-19 UPDATE: We are open! Our team is working and offering consultations via phone, e-mail, and video conferencing.

Auto Accidents Caused By Defective & Dangerous Roads

Were You Injured in an Accident Caused By Poor Road, Highway, or Freeway Design in San Diego, CA?

More than 30,000 people are killed and millions more are injured in car accidents every single year. One of the leading causes of these accidents is road defects. According to statistics, this issue causes an estimated 13,500 crashes annually. This includes the design of the road, issues with road signs and signals, obstructed views, and more.

State agencies and local municipalities are obligated to keep roads maintained and functional. If a dangerous or defective road caused your accident, you may be able to seek compensation from one of these parties. The McClellan Law Firm has experience handling all types of auto accident claims; let us use this experience to your advantage.

Get in touch with The McClellan Law Firm today at (619) 215-1488 to discuss your case with our road defect accident lawyers in San Diego, CA.

Examples of Common Road Defects

A road is "defective" when its design endangers safe drivers. For example, a road should give consistent messages to drivers. Traffic signs should warn drivers of impending hazards and provide rules for safe driving, such as speed limits.

An improperly marked road might cause a motorist to drive unsafely by no fault of his or her own. In short, an unsafe road is violates its purpose: to provide a safe means for transportation. A road should facilitate safe driving in these ways:

  • Clearly marked signs with consistent messages
  • Avoid "surprises," such as an unexpected stop sign
  • Warn drivers of any potential risks or hazards
  • Keep motorists informed of unfamiliar conditions
  • Guide drivers through difficult passages

A few examples of dangerous road defects include:

  • Insufficient shoulders
  • Missing signals, signs, or guardrails
  • Overgrown roadside trees or shrubs
  • Weak bridges and other design elements, including overpasses
  • Construction zones that are not properly marked off or partitioned
  • Poorly designed intersections, on-ramps, off-ramps, and curves
  • Railroad crossings that are not properly protected or marked
  • Distressed pavement, exemplified by potholes, serious cracks, rough patches, and road edge drop-offs

Wrong-Way Crashes

Some of the most devastating accidents caused by poor road design are head-on collisions caused by drivers traveling the wrong way on the road. In a Highway Special Investigation Report (PDF) put together by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) that looked into the causes of deadly wrong-way driving crashes, it was found that one of the leading causes of these types of accidents was drivers entering exit ramps.

While driver-related choices like driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol played a role in entering the wrong ramp, poor signage and poor lighting around these signs played a notable factor. The NTSB concluded that ensuring that clear signage, roadway markings and a way to see these indicators at in the dark were key factors that could help limit the number of wrong-way crashes that occur.

The NTSB also looked the designs of ramps and interchanges and found that the majority of states used one of three designs: full diamond, full cloverleaf, and partial cloverleaf.

Common road designs, via National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Highway Special Investigation Report.

Images provided by the NTSB's Highway Special Investigation Report.

Through their investigation, researchers noted that:

  • Full cloverleaf ramps had the lowest rate of wrong-way entries, while left-hand exit ramps had the highest rate.
  • Drivers are twice as likely to enter the wrong way on partial interchanges compared to full interchanges.
  • Exit ramps that end at two-way streets have a high rate of wrong-way entries.
  • Drivers are more likely to drive the wrong direction at interchanges that have short sight distances leading up to decision points.
  • Drivers are more likely to enter exit ramps with rounded corners than exit ramps with sharp corners due to the fact that it is easier for drivers to recognize the changing road when there is a noticeable turn rather than a more gradual change.

Hire a San Diego Law Firm You Can Trust

At The McClellan Law Firm, our San Diego defective road attorneys remain committed to providing each client with the knowledgeable legal representation required in their time of need. We have secured more than 140 verdicts and settlements in excess of $1 million each, and will continue to fight to achieve the outcome our clients deserve.

Give us a call at (619) 215-1488 to discuss your case with a member of our firm, or request a free consultation today by filling out our online form.

  • Endorced by the Inner Circle of Advocates

    Craig McClellan is a member of the Inner Circle of Advocates, an invitation-only group of the top 100 plaintiff trial lawyers in the United States.

  • Best Lawyers in America 2020

    Craig McClellan has been selected to the list of The Best Lawyers in America every year since 1993.

  • Best Lawers "Best Law Firms" - Personal Injury Litigation Plaintifs Tier 1, 2016

    The firm earned a Tier 1 ranking in Personal Injury in the 2021 list of the Best Law Firms.

  • Best Lawyers "Best Law Firms" - Commercial Litigation Tier 1, 2016

    The firm earned a Tier 1 ranking in Commercial Litigation in the 2021 list of the Best Law Firms.

  • Best Lawyers "Best Law Firms" - Product Liability Tier 1, 2016

    The firm earned a Tier 1 ranking in Product Liability in the 2021 list of the Best Law Firms.

  • Craig McClellan earned one of the top 10 medical malpractice settlements in California, securing a $9,000,000 settlement for a client.

  • Top 10 Settlements

    Craig McClellan & Conor Hulburt earned one of the top 10 premises liability settlements in California, securing a $3,175,850 settlement for a client.

  • Craig McClellan selected to Super Lawyers list, Top 10 San Diego Attorneys

    Craig McClellan has been selected to the list of Super Lawyers every year since 2007, and earned the most votes of ANY lawyer for 2019 in San Diego.

  • Craig McClellan was voted Lawyer of the Year for Product Liability Litigation by Best Lawyers for 2019.

  • 2020 AV Preeminent Peer Rated

    Attorney McClellan earned a Distinguished rating from Martindale-Hubbell for his achievements.

  • America's Top 100 Personal Injury Attorneys

    Craig McClellan is listed as one of America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators in Business Litigation, Personal Injury, and Product Liability.

  • Craig McClellan is rated 10.0 on Avvo - Top rated Personal Injury Lawyer

    Attorney McClellan has a 10/10 “Superb” rating, the highest rating an attorney can receive from Avvo.

  • BBB Accredited Business

    The firm has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, the highest possible rating offered by the organization.

  • Consumer Attorneys of San Diego

    Attorney McClellan is a member of the Consumer Attorneys of San Diego, and previously served on its Board of Directors.

  • Attorney Craig McClellan was named as one of the “Best Attorneys” by the Los Angeles Times.

    Attorney Craig McClellan was named as one of the “Best Attorneys” by the Los Angeles Times.

  • Attorney Craig McClellan named “Best Lawyers” by San Diego Metro.

    Attorney Craig McClellan was named one of the “Best Lawyers” by San Diego Metro.

  • Attorney Craig McClellan named Top Lawyers in San Diego in Business Litigation by San Diego Magazine.

    Attorney Craig McClellan was named one of the Top Lawyers in San Diego in Business Litigation by San Diego Magazine.

  • Craig McClellan has been named among the Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers, which honors the nation’s top advocates.

Trusted Recommendations

See More Reviews
  • We wouldn’t be here, in this moment of life without the kindness and professionalism of you all and how you went to bat for us! Eternally grateful! A.K.

  • Immediately after our interview we knew without question that no matter how steep the mountain, win or lose, we had found the right person—Craig McClellan, Esq.—[…] We felt a profound sense of ... G.P.

  • We will NEVER forget what you did for us Craig. We are FOREVER GRATEFUL. K.V.

  • I just wanted to thank you for your efforts on [Pam’s] behalf, your skills, and your heart. You are not just a lawyer in what you do, you are a master of your profession. And I hope you are passing ... Juror

  • I thank you for your kindness and generosity in giving selflessly without reserve. Additionally, please extend my thanks to your staff for their diligent work and encouragement throughout the trial. A.D.

  • We do not quite know how to verbalize or show how grateful we are to have had the distinct honor to have you represent us at truly the most critical time in our lives. S.C.

  • Having had the high privilege of presiding over a number of cases involving national counsel, I want you to know you’re one of the very best [...]. You and those with you were outstanding ambassadors ...

  • It was a real honor to preside over a case with you as counsel. In my mind you represent all that is good in our profession. Judge J.

  • Your appearance on the nation-wide broadcast of ‘60 Minutes’ was a public service in which all San Diego has reason to take great pride. To integrity—you have added public service and again elevated ... Juror

  • We could not be happier with the McCllelan Law Firm team! My husband and I were referred to Craig McCllelan by one of his peers. We had a very sensitive medical malpractice case that we were hesitant ... S.P.

Get Help Today All Consultations Are Free of Charge
  • Please enter your first name
  • Please enter your last name
  • This isn't a valid phone number
    Please enter your phone number
    You entered an invalid number
  • This isn't a valid email address
    Please enter your email address
  • Please select an option.
  • Please tell us about your case.