The State of Maryland’s Responsibility to Maintain Roads and Sidewalks

The duty to properly maintain a Maryland roadway generally rests with the city, county or state government office that owns and controls the roadway. State and local governments in Maryland are responsible for keeping their roads in good repair and in a reasonably safe condition for travel by Maryland motorcycle riders as well as others.

The government entity tasked with maintaining a roadway may fail to do so, causing the roadway to be unsafe for drivers and pedestrians. In these circumstances, an injured person can sue the government for the government’s failure to maintain roads in safe condition. In claims against local governments in Maryland, the government is generally immune from tort liability when engaging in functions of a “governmental” nature, but not when engaged in functions of a “proprietary” or “private” nature.

Maryland courts have long held that local municipalities are not immune from lawsuits arising out of the maintenance of public streets and highways, and that they have a duty to maintain them in a reasonably safe condition. Local governments may be held liable for injuries caused by a dangerous condition in the road caused by the government’s negligence. In claims against the state government, under the Maryland Tort Claims Act (MTCA) the state expressly waives immunity in some circumstances. One such circumstance is in an action for damages caused by a defective, unsafe, or dangerous condition of a street, sidewalk, alley, or highway controlled and owned by the State, if constructive or actual notice of the condition existed.

Women File Claims Against City After Motorcycle Falls into Hole

According to a local news report, two sisters were riding on an electric scooter in an alley when they lost control and fell into a construction hole. The sisters said that they lost control because of the rough road in the alley. There were orange barriers around the hole but a city spokeswoman said that barriers were defective because they were not stabilized. There was no netting and the barrier was not “staked down.” The hole was 12 feet deep. One of the women was hit in the face with the barrier and both were hospitalized. Both claim to continue to experience pain from the fall. The women filed claims against the city alleging that the city failed to take appropriate measures to protect people, as people often travel through the alleyway on foot or on bikes, scooters, and skateboards. Each of the women sought damages of more than $50,000. The lawsuits are pending.

Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Motorcycle Crash?

If you have been injured in a Maryland motorcycle crash or scooter accident, speak to an experienced injury attorney about your case as soon as possible. The accident attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen, Personal Injury Lawyers, are attorneys who represent victims across Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Virginia. The stress of an accident can be overwhelming and our attorneys take pride in advocating for the rights of victims and have represented Maryland motorcycle accident victims for over 20 years. Contact us today at 1-800-654-1949 or fill out our online form to arrange a free consultation.

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