Icy Road Accidents: Who is responsible?

Every winter drivers in the Philadelphia area and Delaware Country get injured in accidents on icy roads. Who can an injured party hold accountable in such a situation? Is it the other driver? Is the township or city where the accident occurred responsible if they failed to clear the roads? Can an injured workers receive compensation from their employer for requiring them to drive in dangerous conditions?

Other Drivers

The quick answer is an injured driver or passenger can hold accountable any party whose negligence contributed to the accident. However, the specific legal duties and liabilities involved can vary depending on the specific circumstances.


State and Federal laws do not prohibit employers from requiring workers to travel in inclement weather unless either a local or state travel ban is in effect. However, under certain extremely dangerous conditions, an employer could be held liable under tort law.

Federal Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) regulations mandate that a motor carrier employee cannot be fired, disciplined, or discriminated against for refusing to drive when the employee has a reasonable fear for their safety due to hazardous conditions. Each state has its definition of a “motor carrier.” Whether or not an employer falls under this OSHA regulation can be unclear at times. Also, the extent that this proscription applies to other kinds of employees can be uncertain.

The drivers involved in a traffic accident on snowy or icy roads may not be the only responsible parties. If your employer compelled you to drive in unsafe conditions, you should immediately consult the Delaware County personal injury lawyers at Katz Injury Law to determine your legal rights.

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