The vast majority of our roads have protection systems or so-called containment barriers or safety fences that are made in two parts: an upper with a longitudinal strip of galvanized steel and a lower double ripple which is like an H-shaped steel fixed on the floor that maintains the longitudinal strips joined together.
Although this containment system works properly on road motor vehicles with 4 or more wheels to avoid leaving the road or invading the opposite rail in case of accident, by a two-wheeled vehicle as a moped, motorcycle or bicycle, where the body is none other than the human body itself, collide against this type of safety system in our roads can cause severe injuries to the driver and occupant, when on the road, in most cases and assuming you’re properly equipped, you would only have abrasions or a fracture, impacts against these shapes in “H” represents an effect of “guillotine” or “knife” against the body, assuming in most cases, very serious injuries of amputation or severe trauma with spinal cord section or directly death.
Just speed at 30 km/h is sufficient to cause these serious injuries reported.
The European Union and other neighboring countries have already designed and implemented different types of protections that cover the most sensitive areas of the guard-rails, but in Spain only these improvements are implemented when new roads are built, and this also depending on the judgment of the competent administration for each infrastructure, and based on the applicable regulations, which in most cases corresponds to the Circular Order 221 of 1971, now repealed and amended by Circular Order 321/95 T and P 1995 which in turn has been extended by Circular Order 18/2004 on using criteria system for protecting motorcyclists, with technical report of 25 October 2006 on the application of road protection systems motorcyclists, both from the Dirección General de Carreteras del Ministerio de Fomento, which has led to the final approval of the AENOR UNE 135900: 2008 (BOE 30.10.08), which basically consists of assessing the damage and behavior that undergoes a dummy in special test when it hits a double protection system at different speeds, the most recommended system so far to protect motorists and cyclists of a potential collision with them.
Despite the obligation of public authorities of adapting public roads to the recommendations of the European Union in relation to the guard rails, it is legally described as merely a “recommendation” and that’s why we still have many roads with this inadequate element meaning a real danger (for motorists, cyclists and occupants of other vehicles where the bodywork is the human body itself), but if there is an accident where it is proved that injuries are due to improper installation of these dangerous barriers, our jurisprudence tends to the compensation of victims with a clear judgment that despite this is a “recommendation” from the EU is not an indifferent nor excusable failure for the administration to adopt a recognized measure for reasonable risk elimination. So even admitting that the replacement little by little of the containment barriers would mean proper functioning of public services, this does not exclude the liability of the Administration for an injury caused by the existence of such barriers, since this element of risk comes from the Administration itself, which is responsible to check and implement the best technical characteristics in fences within its competence, so that the necessary requirement for estimating the liability of the public administration is fulfilled because the victim has no legal duty to bear the damage suffered (STSS of 23.07.2001, 01.12.2009 and 07.02.2012 and others), although it has to be clear that in most cases applies one contributory negligence while it is estimated that the victim (driver) has committed some kind of traffic offence as may be over speed or inadequate speed to the specific circumstances of the road, inattention, etc ..
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