Negligence and Driving Conditions

There has been considerable media focus of late on the new Port Mann Bridge and winter driving conditions. Following up on the snowfall which led to ice falling from its cables and damaging vehicles below, the Port Mann was again the setting for another series of accidents involving fog and black ice.¬†Port Mann Pileup¬†. Following the 40 plus accidents which occurred over a few hours, the bridge was again closed to traffic. The incident reminds us that the combination of slippery roads and driver inattention can cause mayhem on the roads. In the follow up investigation into the accidents, it has been determined that the contractor responsible for maintaining the bridge had taken adequate steps to ensure the safety of the bridge in the hours leading up to the pileup. In truth, driver inattention to fog and potential ice was the decisive factor in causing this mass accident. When it comes to determining negligence in any motor vehicle accident, it is always important to understand that what is a ‘reasonable’ standard of care in operating a vehicle will change depending on the road conditions. Often, if ¬†someone is driving in winter conditions at the posted speed limit and is driving at their usual distance behind another vehicle, if they are involved in an accident, they will be found to be partially or completely at fault. When it comes to driving in difficult weather conditions, you must take steps to ensure you are driving in a reasonably safe manner so as to avoid any accident and injury.

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