Snowplow accidents can result in permanent injury or tragedy

While snowplows are a common sight in Upstate New York during the winter months, their large size, weight, attached equipment, and presence on roadways during poor driving conditions make for a uniquely dangerous situation which can result in serious permanent injury or tragedy.

On January 26, 2021, a Glens Falls Hospital nurse was fatally injured when she unknowingly walked behind a snowplow as it was backing up.

Whether involved in an accident with a snowplow, truck, or bus as a pedestrian, car passenger, or driver, you may be asking what type of lawyer will represent me or my family for an accident involving a plow and what are my rights?

Here are 5 common questions about truck and snowplow accidents:

How much time do I have to pursue a claim against a snowplow driver?

In New York, there are shorter than usual time frames within which to file a claim against a governmental entity, such as those that may operate snowplows. A claim may need to be filed as early as 90 days after an accident occurs, to preserve the right to pursue a claim. In New York generally, the time to bring a claim against a privately owned snowplow or truck is 3 years from the date of the accident.  The timing may be different if the snowplow was owned by an individual or a private entity.

What if I am hit by snowplow while crossing the road and am not in a crosswalk?

While vehicles on the roadway not in an area with a crosswalk have the right of way, a snowplow driver is always required to use reasonable care to avoid hitting a pedestrian, even if that pedestrian is not in a crossing area.

Will I have to go to Court?

Your injury lawyer can make efforts early in a case to settle before having to go to court. Sometimes an agreement cannot be reached as to fair compensation for a person’s injuries or who is at fault for the accident. In those circumstances, it may be necessary to commence a lawsuit in Court and proceed to trial if a favorable settlement cannot be reached. Ultimately, it is always the client’s decision whether to accept a settlement offer or proceed to trial.

What do I need to prove to receive compensation for my injuries?

The plaintiff in a personal injury case has the burden of proving that a defendant snowplow driver and/or owner was negligent or failed to operate the snowplow safely. Your personal injury lawyer will need to prove that the snowplow driver and/or owner’s failures were the primary cause of your injuries or the wrongful death of your loved one.

How do I find the right personal injury lawyer to represent me or my family?

There are many choices when it comes to choosing a lawyer. The best lawyers have experience handling similar cases, have compassion for the challenges you and your loved ones are facing, communicate clearly, are accessible when needed, and make your feel comfortable and knowledgeable about the process ahead. While there are many respected personal injury lawyers, most of the time it is really about who is the best lawyer for you.

LaMarche Safranko Law has a team of dedicated, seasoned professionals who are not only fierce advocates, but genuinely care and provide crucial legal guidance during times of tragedy.