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Establishing Fault in a New Hampshire Multi-Vehicle Construction Site Accident

October 28, 2022

Construction sites can often disrupt the surrounding road and create a traffic backup near the site. Unfortunately, on a highway or turnpike, a traffic backup near a construction site can result in dangerous injuries. Highway drivers often travel at faster speeds compared to local roads. As a result, the failure to brake when approaching a traffic buildup can lead to a high-speed collision, which may result in significant injuries and property damage.

For example, a recent news article reported that four vehicles collided near a construction site on the Spaulding Turnpike in Dover, New Hampshire. The ongoing construction had led to a traffic backup on the southbound highway. The chain collision occurred after one driver did not slow down soon enough at the traffic backup, crashing into the car in front of him. The driver of the car he hit then crashed into the GMC Yukon in front of her. This caused the GMC Yukon driver to hit the Chevrolet Equinox in front of him. Following the chain-reaction crash, three people were hospitalized. According to police, one factor in the crash appears to be distracted driving.

How Does New Hampshire Apportion Fault in Multi-Vehicle Construction Site Collisions?

New Hampshire law allows injured plaintiffs to recover damages if they are less than 51% responsible for the accident. This means plaintiffs can recover even if they are equally at fault for the accident compared to the defendants of their suit. However, in a multi-vehicle collision, proving that a defendant’s actions caused the accident can be difficult. For example, a distracted driver that hits the back of one vehicle may cause the vehicle to hit the back of the car in front of it. In this scenario, the driver of the vehicle that was hit may have technically caused the second accident, but it likely would not have happened if the first driver were not distracted. Due to these complex issues of causation in multi-vehicle collisions, plaintiffs may benefit from a personal injury attorney to help gather and sort through the evidence to establish the actual cause of an accident.

In addition to the other drivers involved in a collision, an injured plaintiff may pursue damages against the party managing the construction site. In New Hampshire, a person can pursue a negligence claim after suffering injuries from a dangerous approach to a highway. This can include a failure to erect barriers, place lights, or put signs around a construction site. To recover against a construction site manager, a plaintiff must show the dangerous approach to the highway that caused the injury.

However, a negligence claim against a construction site manager can grow complicated when the accident involves multiple vehicles. Under New Hampshire law, if the failure to guard the site was the sole cause of the accident, the plaintiff has therefore failed to show that other drivers in the collision caused the accident. In this scenario, because the plaintiff can only recover damages from a defendant if they prove causation, the plaintiff could not recover from the other drivers. A New Hampshire personal injury attorney can assist plaintiffs by sifting through the evidence to determine the best possible theory of recovery for damages.

Have You Been Injured in a New Hampshire Construction Accident?

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in a New Hampshire car accident near a construction site, connect with the personal injury attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates today. Our attorneys handle complex personal injury claims, including multi-vehicle car accidents and construction accidents. Through our experienced and skilled representation, we are ready to help you pursue the compensation you need and deserve. To schedule a no-obligation, free initial consultation, call our office at 1-800-804-2004.