“I was riding past a building site and the lorries using the site must have pulled out the mud so the road was covered in it. I slowed down but I couldn’t stop the front wheel slipping out from under me, leaving me with a broken thumb and fractured arm. I have photographs of the road which were taken on the day of the accident, showing the mud. Where do I stand legally?”
Erica Janes, Southport
You should claim against the site owner for failing to keep the road clear, even though the lorries that caused the mud to be on the road may have been sub-contractors.
The local authority planning department can tell you the name of the site owner, or alternatively your solicitor can carry out a land registry search.
It’s unlikely that the site owners can escape blame, but if so the next step would be to find out whether the local authority knew or ought to have known about the problem.
A local authority has a duty in law to maintain the highway and if the problem is recurrent they would also be expected to clean up the road.
As a final step, you could make a claim to the Motor Insurer’s Bureau (MIB) under the ‘untraced driver scheme’. The MIB would have to be convinced that the mud was brought out onto the road due to a vehicle.
The photographs that you have taken will help. But I expect your claim to be successful against the site owner first and foremost.
RS10 C10 EM10