If while operating your vehicle you cause damage to a highway, bridge, or other state property, you may be liable for those damages, which could include costs of repairs, fines, and citations. Typically, this responsibility will fall to you as the driver if you are illegally operating your vehicle and cause the damage or negligently operate your vehicle and cause damage. If you allow another person to unlawfully or negligently operate your vehicle, you as the owner may also be held responsible for the damages caused by the driver and receive other violations.
Tri-Cities Personal Injury Attorneys
If you have been injured in an accident with a commercial vehicle or semi-truck then you need a personal injury attorney on your side. The attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm believe everyone deserves fair representation, not just the big insurance companies. Call us today at 509-582-7274 for a free consultation to discuss your case.
The Washington law regarding liability for damage to property and liability of the owner for others is as follows:
RCW 46.44.110: Liability for Damage to Highways, Bridges, etc.
Any person operating any vehicle or moving any object or conveyance upon any public highway in this state or upon any bridge or elevated structure that is a part of any such public highway is liable for all damages that the public highway, bridge, elevated structure, or other state property may sustain as a result of any illegal operation of the vehicle or the moving of any such object or conveyance or as a result of the operation or moving of any vehicle, object, or conveyance weighing in excess of the legal weight limits allowed by law. This section applies to any person operating any vehicle or moving any object or contrivance in any illegal or negligent manner or without a special permit as provided by law for vehicles, objects, or contrivances that are overweight, over width, over height, or overlength. Any person operating any vehicle is liable for any damage to any public highway, bridge, elevated structure, or other state property sustained as the result of any negligent operation thereof. When the operator is not the owner of the vehicle, object, or contrivance but is operating or moving it with the express or implied permission of the owner, the owner and the operator are jointly and severally liable for any such damage. Such damage to any state highway, structure, or other state property may be recovered in a civil action instituted in the name of the state of Washington by the department of transportation or other affected state agency. Any measure of damage determined by the department of transportation to its highway, bridge, elevated structure, or other property under this section is prima facie the amount of damage caused thereby and is presumed to be the amount recoverable in any civil action therefor. The damages available under this section include the incident response costs, including traffic control, incurred by the department of transportation.
RCW 46.44.120: Liability of Owner, Others, for Violations
Whenever an act or omission is declared to be unlawful in chapter 46.44 RCW, the owner or lessee of any motor vehicle involved in such act or omission is responsible therefor. Any person knowingly and intentionally participating in creating an unlawful condition of use, is also subject to the penalties provided in this chapter for such unlawful act or omission.
If the person operating the vehicle at the time of the unlawful act or omission is not the owner or lessee of the vehicle, such person is fully authorized to accept the citation and execute the promise to appear on behalf of the owner or lessee.
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Tri-Cities, Washington Law Office
Our Tri-Cities, Washington law office provides legal services to injury clients in and surrounding Tri-Cities, including clients injured in accidents in Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland, Washington. Visit or call our Tri-Cities office now.8905 W Gage Blvd, #200 Kennewick, WA 99336 Phone:(509) 582-7274