Defendants Must Keep Their Car in a Reasonably Safe Condition
If you are injured in a car accident where the collision is caused by the defendant’s failure to maintain their vehicle in a reasonably safe condition, then you may have a right of action against the defendant for damages. In Arizona, and elsewhere, drivers have a duty to maintain their vehicles — failure to do so could expose them to significant civil liability in the event of an accident.
Defendants Have a Duty to Properly Maintain Their Vehicles
In Arizona, all drivers have a duty to maintain their vehicles in a reasonably safe condition so as to minimize the risk of injury to others. Ensuring that one’s vehicle is properly maintained and free of defective conditions (that could pose an injury risk) may require a wide range of active behaviors, such as regular inspections, professional servicing and repair, and more.
Whether the defendant has done enough to maintain their vehicle will depend on the circumstances of the case. For example, if the defendant notices that their engine is acting up quite a bit, and they refuse to inspect the condition to determine whether the engine is faulty and in need of repair, then that may constitute negligence (if the engine fails and leads to a collision).
Knew or Reasonably Should Have Known
Critically, you can only hold a defendant-driver liable for the failure to adequately maintain their vehicle (in a safe condition) if you can prove that the defendant knew of the defective condition at-issue, or reasonably should have known about the defective condition. Drivers must regularly inspect their vehicles, or have a professional do so on their behalf. If a defective condition is obvious and should have been discovered during the inspection, but was not, then the defendant may still be held liable. Of course, some defective conditions may become known (or reasonably should be known) even outside of the inspection context — for example, if a tire goes flat, then the driver should become aware of the defective condition, even if they have not performed an “inspection.”
Schedule a Free Consultation With an Experienced Phoenix Car Accident Lawyer
If you have been injured in a car accident due to the fault of another party, you may be entitled to recover significant damages pursuant to Arizona law — but litigation can often be quite complicated. As such, we encourage you to get in touch with a seasoned team of attorneys who can aggressively represent your interests from beginning-to-end of litigation.
Here at Hirsch & Lyon, our attorneys have over six decades of combined experience advocating on behalf of car accident plaintiffs, including those involved in accidents where the collision occurred due to the defendant’s failure to adequately maintain their vehicle in a safe condition. As a firm, we focus entirely on car, truck, and motorcycle accidents, so we are fully capable of handling “edge cases” and disputes where the defendant’s liability may be difficult to assess.
Call (602) 397-3117 or submit an online claim form today to schedule a free and confidential consultation with an experienced Phoenix car accident lawyer at Hirsch & Lyon. We will evaluate your case and — if the claims are worth pursuing — will work with you to develop a strategy for securing maximum compensation.