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Transportation Laws

Bassett Law Firm is a leader in professional and civic affairs. With a number of attorneys that specialize in transportation law, we are uniquely equipped to work alongside you and your team to navigate the complexities of your transportation project. Transportation not only involves vehicles, but also railways, airways, and waterways. 

What Transportation Law Covers

Transportation law is the area of law dealing with transport. This can apply broadly at a transport system level or narrowly to transport things or activities within that system such as vehicles, activities, and behaviors. Transport law is generally found in two main areas: legislation and statutory law are the laws passed or made by elected officials or made by other officials under delegation, or case laws, which are decided by your courts. Most types of transportation issues include the use of cars and trucks. 

When it comes to car accidents, it is often pretty simple to figure out who’s to blame. For instance, if the car behind you rear-ends you, then the other driver is held accountable for any damage or injuries sustained. However, what about those times when your automobile is damaged due to poor road maintenance? This can include everything from potholes to wet roads.

Bassett Law Firm abides by the regulations of each individual state. You can find more detail about state regulations and laws by going into each state’s designated Department of Transportation.

The Government’s Responsibility

Typically, the city, county or even state where the roads were poorly maintained are held responsible for any damage that occurs while out driving. That’s because it is the government’s job to keep these roads safe, so that these types of incidences don’t happen in the first place. With that said, though, these claims have to be reasonable. State laws have it written that the government is allotted a certain amount of time to find and then fix poor road conditions. Governments usually discover these dangerous road conditions from citizens reporting them or routine road checks. That means if the government hasn’t found a dangerous road condition, chances are they can’t be held responsible for any damage caused on that very road. The only exception is if that road has been unsafe for such a long time, that the government should have discovered the problem already. Again, even if the government knows of the hazardous road conditions, if they did not have enough time to repair the condition, they won’t be held accountable for any damage drivers accumulate. 

Transportation Laws Differ from State to State

The Oklahoma Transportation Committee oversees Oklahoma’s Department of Transportation, which is an eight-member board appointed to eight-year terms by the Governor. Each member represents his or her own geographical district in the state. Each focusing on maintaining the conditions and fluency of the highway-based transportation system.

While Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department provides and maintains a safe and environmentally sound transportation system for the state, they manage the state highway system and the public transportation system within their state.

Each state has regulations given by the government for maintaining safety for those traveling in the states. For any kind of maintenance, these states are required to have proper caution signs up. Otherwise, if an accident occurs it would become the states fault. Transportation not only involves vehicles, but railways, airways, and waterways. All regulations and laws are defined in the contents of that state’s Department of Transportation.

Steps to Pursuing a Case

If you decide that the government is definitely to blame for the damage done to your car while driving, it is time to make a claim. First, you will have to take down any important information like where the hazardous road was located, the direction you were traveling and the names and phone numbers of any witnesses who saw the damage take place. Then, you must find out which part of the government was in charge of maintaining the road where the damage happened. Usually, you’ll be able to find that out by calling your local county commissioners’ office. After that, you have to give the proper government body notice of your claim. This needs to be done quickly, as there tends to be a limited amount of time given in these sort of situations. If you wait too long, you may forfeit your rights to this claim.

Proving You Were in the Right

The government is not automatically going to hand over money for your property damage. Instead, you must prove that the government is responsible for the damage. Begin by demonstrating that the government knew of the poor road conditions and didn’t act on this soon enough. To do this, request a copy of any survey records. In these records, it will show whether someone previously reported the poor road conditions. Once you have these records demonstrating your point, you definitely have a case.

Fayetteville Transportation Attorney’s At Your Help 

Our team is poised to exceed the high expectations of their state and federal practices. Bassett Law Firm is a reliable and caring group of attorneys. They are qualified and ready to handle your legal situation. Whether you’re in Arkansas, Oklahoma, or Missouri, if you’d like to discuss the ways our firm can provide counsel for the benefit of your community’s transportation systems, we’d love to talk.  Contact the Bassett Law Firm LLP at 479.521.9996 to speak with one of our attorneys.