North Carolina’s Department of Transportation (NCDOT) recently announced plans for another update project for the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge. This bridge connects Brunswick County and New Hanover County with a lift section that can allow ships to pass under the bridge safely when needed. If you experience an accident on this bridge or because of any other road work project, a North Carolina DOT lawyer is the ideal resource to consult.
It’s important to note that the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge is still safe, but it has technically reached the end of its operable lifespan and requires updating. Every year, NCDOT conducts thorough safety checks on the bridge, and traffic data from various sources indicates that the bridge will see more daily traffic in the coming years. Therefore, NCDOT has decided to invest in new updates to ensure the highest levels of safety for every driver who crosses this bridge.
Work will begin in January of 2024 and continue through the spring, with a projected completion time of May 2024. The project will close the eastbound lanes first, reopen the entirety of the bridge for the Azalea Festival, and then close the westbound lanes while the project is completed. Previous projects on the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge included new decking installation in 1996 and a new control system for the lift mechanism in 2007.
During the various phases of construction, drivers may need to wait for traffic to pass through a one-lane configuration, and detours are likely to be placed to alleviate congestion in the area during the project. It is always vital to use extra caution whenever you drive through or near any road construction project, and it is essential to know what to do after you have any kind of vehicle accident.
The state enforces the fault rule for vehicle accidents, meaning it will be necessary for you to prove fault for your recent collision before you will be able to recover any compensation for resulting damages. Once you have established fault, you can seek compensation for vehicle repair costs, medical expenses, lost income, and your pain and suffering. However, if an NCDOT employee is responsible for a collision, you face a more challenging road to recovery.
Suing a government agency is very different from filing a civil suit against another private party. You face a limited window of time in which to file your claim; you also face restrictions in terms of the damages available, and you will need the help of an experienced North Carolina DOT lawyer to help you navigate your case successfully.
You cannot always anticipate the actions of others on the road, and an experienced attorney can help you recover from an accident that someone else caused. Christina Rivenbark & Associates can help determine your most viable recovery options after experiencing any type of motor vehicle crash, including one involving NCDOT and their employees.
A: Construction on the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge began in 1967 and concluded in 1969. A section of the bridge includes a lift span that can allow ships to pass under the bridge. A recent alert from Brunswick County announced NCDOT’s plan to update the bridge during 2024. NCDOT plans to close sections of the bridge to accommodate necessary repairs and updates to the bridge.
A: No, but the bridge is not built to withstand the anticipated increase in traffic that it will see over the next few years. NCDOT has performed annual inspections on the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge, and there have been several updates and reconstruction projects performed on the bridge over the past decades. This new project is intended to update the bridge further and to ensure it can safely withstand the traffic loads expected in the coming years.
A: Resolving the aftermath of an accident on a bridge follows the same framework you would expect after any other vehicle accident. You will need to prove fault, identify the driver responsible for causing the accident, and prove the full extent of your damages to recover from the incident. If you are found to bear any liability for the accident, you will not be able to claim compensation for your damages from another driver under the contributory fault rule.
A: NCDOT anticipates four stages of its project to update the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge. On January 28, the eastbound lanes of the bridge will close for construction. On March 31, all lanes will be opened for the Azalea Festival. On April 9, all westbound lanes will close. Work is expected to be completed by May 23. If you must cross the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge at any time during this project, use extra caution and heed all posted warning signs and traffic directions.
A: Hiring legal representation is a good idea after any accident. If you are hurt in an accident and believe that the negligence of a DOT employee contributed to causing it, you will need an attorney who has experience resolving these cases. Your attorney can help you understand your options for legal recourse, file a car insurance claim for initial recovery, and assist you in building a personal injury case if necessary.
The team at Christina Rivenbark & Associates has years of experience resolving all types of car accident cases, including those in which NCDOT employees contribute to causing an injured driver’s damages. If you have recently experienced any type of car accident in the state and need an attorney’s assistance to recover, contact us today and schedule a consultation with a North Carolina DOT lawyer you can trust with your case.