It’s a statistic no one likes to think about: the probability that Floridians will be involved in a fatal car crash is just 1 in 3.972. The probability of dying is 1 in 8123. There are over 200,000 car accidents each year in the Sunshine State and thousands of fatalities. Non-fatal injuries include everything from head and neck injuries to broken bones and soft tissue damage (e.g. whiplash). The impacts can be far-reaching.
What are the most common causes for car accidents in Florida, and what should you do if you find yourself among the statistics?
Top 5 Causes of Car Accidents
1. Distracted Driving.
According to some reports, this is the most common cause of Florida car accidents. While any number of factors, from talking to children to eating, can cause distraction, texting is often to blame. Today, texting while driving results in more fatalities than driving while intoxicated. It is illegal in Florida, and drivers can be held liable.
2. Driving While Intoxicated.
Too many people still think they’re “completely fine to drive” when they’ve had a few too many. Alcohol causes delays in reaction and impaired judgement. Driving while intoxicated or under the influence is a major problem in Florida: rates are higher than the national average. Driving in this condition can result in criminal and civil charges.
3. Speeding or Driving Too Fast for Conditions.
Whether a driver is exceeding the posted limit or traveling too fast for the conditions (e.g. going 50 in a 50mph zone even though visibility is low because of fog), speeding is incredibly dangerous. Speed increases the distance and time you need to stop, and it can cause problems such as hydroplaning.
4. Reckless or Careless Driving.
This is a major cause of collisions in Florida. Reckless driving is the wanton or intentional disregard for safety. In other words, a driver fully intends to cause damage. Careless driving is driving without “due caution” and is unintentional. In either case, these dangerous drivers can find themselves in legal trouble.
5. Not Paying Attention to Surroundings.
Watching the road is just part of the equation. Drivers also need to keep an eye on their surroundings. Is there a pedestrian stepping off the curb? Is there a motorcycle behind you? Is that car running a stop sign? Failing to pay attention and remain aware is a major factor in front-, rear- and side collisions.
Dangerous driving also puts pedestrians at risk. There is a 1 in 29,627 chance of being killed by a car in Florida when you are not in a moving vehicle. This is far more than the national average.
Car accidents are caused by any number of factors, from criminal recklessness to negligence to weather conditions. If you are involved in a collision, the first step is to assure your own safety. Seek medical attention; have an assessment to determine the extent of your injuries, if any, and the proper course of treatment.
If you believe the other driver is at fault, contact a Florida personal injury attorney immediately. They can help ensure your rights are safeguarded and that you receive the compensation you deserve for injury, distress, lost wages, medical expenses, and other damages.
Insurance companies have a stake in minimizing your experience — and any payout. This makes seeking the advice of an experienced car accident injury attorney even more critical. It’s in the insurance companies best interest if you don’t know your rights. You must act in your own best interest. A qualified lawyer can help you receive the full value of your claim instead of the first offer tossed out by the insurance company.
Contact LaBovick Law Group for a free consultation; we will fight on your behalf.