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Council sign fell on my car

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my car was hit by a permanent road sign that fell from its post on a main road it caused about £ 4000 of damage to my car.

I notified the council at the time and submitted a claim to their insurance company.


I have now received an email from the insurance company with a document showing that the council inspected the road the month before the incident. So as they had inspected the road they did not see any defect with the sign then they are not liable. I have taken pictures of the post the sign was on and it is badly corroded although i do not think this is why the sign fell. I have further examined the Councils inspection record as it has the inspection reports since the incident and they haven't even picked up that the sign post is missing.


Their insurance company have said there is no appeal procedure


 is there anyone that can give me advice on where to go from here.

I dont want to go through my insurance company and lose no claims.



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  • dx100uk changed the title to Council sign fell on my car, their insurance company say i have no claim as the road was inspected the month before with no issues found.. help!

You can always use the small claims track but there are a few hoops to jump through first.


Who is their Insurance company? Which LA is this?


Have you spoken to any of your local councillors?


Have you got evidence of the damage to your car and have you had a quote to get repairs?


IMHO I'd steer clear of emails, this warrants a paper trail of evidence, get a name and write them get proof of postage which is free from the PO counter, OR, hand deliver it if your LA is near to you.

Who ever heard of someone getting a job at the Jobcentre? The unemployed are sent there as penance for their sins, not to help them find work!



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Please can you tell us when this happened. In fact give us a timeline.

You don't need to go through their insurer.

You can sue the council directly and we will help you.

Very good that you've taken the photographs et cetera and also that you contacted them.

Get two quotations for the repair and then let us know.

I suggest that you issue letter of claim without any delay at all. Then issue the claim.

There is no reason to hang around. If you are happy with this approach then draft a letter of claim and post it here once you have got your independent quotations.

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Hi the local authority is Telford and Wrekin, Their insurance company is Broadspire by Crawford & Company.

The incident happened on the 3rd December at 18.30, I notified the council the next day about the sign and they gave me a reference number. They gave me the details of how to claim I had a letter from Broadspire on the 29th December to say they were investigating and could I provide photos of the damage and estimate for repairs. i struggled to get an estimate so this was sent in on 4th Feb with photographs of the damage, the sign and the post it was on.

I only received their email yesterday.

Copy of their email

Good morning Andrew,


I refer to the above matter
I can confirm our investigations have now been completed.  I can advise that the area is inspected on a monthly basis. Please find attached the schedule of inspections and the list of defects found at those inspections.
Under section 41 of the Highways Act 1980 has a duty to maintain the highway. Under section 58 of the same Act, it is a defence to prove that the Council had taken such care as in all the circumstances was reasonable required to secure that the part of the highway to which the action relates was not dangerous to traffic.
The inspection was carried out prior to your accident was on the 12 November 2020 . No actionable defects were noted at this point. The council did not receive any notifications about the sign being loose before or after your accident. 
As the council were not aware of the presence of any issues with the sign before the incident,  unfortunately we are unable to consider your claim further and it is therefore denied. 
You are entitled to seek independent legal advice or consult with the Citizens Advice Bureau at any time regarding the matter.


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Okay, well it doesn't matter what they say. Obviously they going to do anything they can to deny liability in order to save money.

You actually is against the council.

I suggest that you send them an FOIA request and asked them for all information/documentation relating to the upkeep of signs in that area and particular details of inspections and all works which have been carried out in the last 12 months.
Ask them for policies they have in terms of the standards of maintenance and of condition of the signs – and then asked them for all information they have relating to the maintenance of that particular sign including inspections and reports.


Also, say that you want all documentation relating to any policies that they have adopted concerning their liability to people who are injured by their signs, pavements, Street condition et cetera.

Also, ask them to disclose to you all documentation relating to any damage or injuries caused by any incident involving street signs over the past 12 months.

Send it off this weekend. They will have 20 days to respond. Make sure you identify the sign correctly. Check it and see if there is any kind of reference number on the sign so that you can identify not only by the address of it but by some reference number.

Start reading up on this forum about the steps involved in taking a small claim in the County Court. That's probably where this is going to have to go.

Be aware that the council are totally careless about their money and they won't decide to defend this on the basis of any economic efficiency. They will simply be prepared to throw money at it in order to crush you.

I estimate that your chances of winning are very good – better than 85%.



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