News & Resources
Levine_Law removebg

Pothole Blamed for Scary Car Accident on Colorado’s I-70

A Las Vegas couple was lucky to walk away unharmed after a recent single-car accident on I-70 in Colorado that they say was caused by a pothole.

The harrowing crash, which was caught on a nearby vehicle’s dashboard camera, occurred as the pair was driving toward Denver near Loveland Ski Area, according to a KDVR report. The couple said they hit a pothole, which caused the camper trailer they were pulling with their pickup truck to jackknife and swing wildly.

“There was a big jerk, and I feel that the trailer was pushing on the truck and then I started swerving out of control and spinning,” the man behind the wheel of the pickup told KDVR.

The couple said they were driving at or below the speed limit and were not breaking any laws when the accident occurred. Yet, the driver was reportedly cited for careless driving by the Colorado State Patrol.

The Colorado Department of Transportation appeared to acknowledge that the road was not in a safe condition at the time of the crash. 

CDOT reportedly closed the highway to repair a large pothole in the same area just two days after the crash. KDVR said it was not able to determine whether it was the exact same pothole that caused the accident, but the couple believes fixing the potholes sooner could have prevented their crash.

“We were just cruising along and next thing you know the trailer starts to jerk and it makes us lose absolute control and it was very scary,” the woman passenger in the pickup told KDVR. “I thought I was going to die.”

Potholes Pose Safety Hazards

While the couple was fortunately unscathed in the cash, it is yet another reminder of how poor road conditions can pose serious safety hazards. 

That is especially true in winter months when rain, sleet and snow often make potholes worse and more difficult to see. Temperature changes can cause the pavement to expand and retract, weakening driving surfaces and leading to potholes.

The first instinct for many drivers when they spot a pothole is to swerve to avoid it. The problem is that this kind of sudden reaction can result in an accident, particularly in heavy traffic. 

CDOT recommends that if you cannot avoid a pothole, you should reduce your speed and check your rear or side-view mirrors before swerving or braking abruptly.

“Hitting a pothole at higher speeds greatly increases the chance of damaging tires, wheels and suspension components,” CDOT says on its website.

Drivers in Denver whose cars are damaged by potholes can request that the city and county pick up the tab for repairing the car. An auto insurance policy will typically also cover these costs.

Winter Weather Driving on I-70

There are a number of other ways in which harsh weather makes driving even more tricky.

I-70 has been closed multiple times this year in Glenwood Canyon as a result of traffic accidents, for example. In response, state officials are considering a number of moves to improve safety, including lowering speed limits through the Canyon, metering traffic by physically slowing traffic down with snow plows, and increasing speed enforcement.

I-70 was recently closed for several hours after a semi-truck crash. Although no one was injured in the accident, the truck was reportedly carrying coffee products that were strewn across the highway in both directions.

CSP regularly warns drivers of the safety hazards of driving during the winter. Officers urge drivers to ensure that their vehicles have been winterized and proceed with caution when they get on the road.

Legal Rights for People Injured in Colorado Car Crashes

Anyone who has been injured in a car accident in Colorado has the right to seek compensation from those responsible for the crash. 

That includes state and local governments responsible for keeping roads in safe condition, as well as negligent drivers, defective vehicle manufacturers and other parties, depending on the circumstances. 

Drivers, for example, owe others on the road a “duty of care” that requires them to operate their vehicles in a reasonably safe manner. That means obeying traffic laws, maintaining appropriate speeds and taking steps to ensure that their vehicles are in good working order. It also means avoiding risky behavior, like drinking and driving. 

A driver that does not live up to this responsibility is likely to be liable for any accidents that happen as a result.

The money damages typically available in Colorado car accident cases are meant to help put the injured person back in the financial position that he or she was in before the accident happened. It often includes money for doctors’ bills, missed wages during physical recuperation and any long-term impact on the injured person’s ability to make a living or participate in day-to-day life. 

State law also empowers certain family members to sue for wrongful death in the tragic event that a loved one is killed in an accident. The spouse, children and parents of a person who dies in a collision have the right to pursue a claim. In the event that a person dies without a spouse, child or parent, the personal representative of his or her estate can sue for wrongful death.

No amount of money will allow you to go back in time and stop the crash from happening. Compensation can, however, help ease the financial burden that often comes with a crash.

Talk with a Denver Car Accident Lawyer 

If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash in Colorado, a Denver car accident lawyer at Levine Law can help you understand your rights and get compensation for your injuries. Our attorneys combine decades of experience and a strong track record of success in the courtroom and through negotiated settlements.

We are pleased to serve clients throughout Colorado, including in Denver, Colorado Springs, Ft. Collins and Loveland. Call us at 303-333-8000 or contact us online to speak with a Denver car accident lawyer.

Levine law

Find Out How Much Your Case in Worth

Call us for a FREE consultation. No Fee Unless We Get You Money.

Schedule a Consultation

No Fees Unless We Win
Levine_Law removebg

Related Post

Levine Law Arrow