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Florida Vehicle Collision Blog

What to know about Florida motorcycle accidents

Florida residents who enjoy riding motorcycles should be aware of their rights if they get into an accident with another vehicle. They should also understand what the laws are so that they comply with them.

Many motorcycle accidents happen when other motorists fail to see oncoming motorcycles and turn left in front of them. Motorists who cause motorcycle accidents by turning left in front of them will generally be at fault unless the motorcyclist was traveling at an excessive speed or ran a red light. If an accident happens, the liability of both the motorcyclist and the other motorist will be determined according to comparative negligence rules.

Lesser-known causes of truck crashes

Tractor-trailer accidents continue to be a serious problem in Florida and across the United States. Federal statistics show that approximately 475,000 large trucks are involved in collisions each year. These accidents kill over 5,000 people and injure more than 140,000 others.

While many truck crashes are caused by factors like distracted driving and speeding, many are also caused by lesser-known factors. For example, studies show that Thursdays are the deadliest day of the week for truck drivers. The second deadliest day is Friday. The reason is that truck drivers tend to be more fatigued and stressed toward the end of the week than they are at the beginning. Statistics also show that there tend to be more fatal truck accidents between the hours of 6 a.m. and 3 p.m. when compared to other times of the day.

Combating drowsy driving

Florida drivers may be able to use a device that will shock them with an electric pulse to keep them awake. This may reduce the number of people who are killed every year in the United States by individuals who are driving while drowsy.

Drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, thousands of fatal accidents occur annually in the United States due to drowsy drivers. Things like energy drinks, loud music and coffee only serve to as temporary solutions to making drivers stay awake. The developers of Steer, a device that vibrates and shocks when a driver dozes off, believe their invention is a better option. It is being financed through a crowdfunding platform.

How can I prove serious injury after an accident?

After involvement in a car accident in Florida, one question that may be on your mind is proving the extent of your injuries, especially when there is little to no damage to your vehicle. As challenging as your situation may seem, it is possible for you to do so.

The actions you take immediately following your motor vehicle crash can provide sufficient evidence that your injuries do exist and they stem from the vehicle wreck. Here is a brief overview of how you can support your claim. 

Large truck accidents are on the rise

Large truck and bus accidents are on the rise in Florida and across the United States, according to federal statistics. Large trucks are classified as those weighing more than 10,000 pounds.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration reports that 4,311 large trucks and buses were involved in deadly accidents in 2015, which represents an 8 percent jump over the previous year. Further, the number of deaths from large truck and bus crashes per 100 million miles driven increased from 0.138 to 0.14 between 2014 and 2015, which is a jump of 1.7 percent. Overall, the number of fatal crashes involving large trucks and buses spiked 20 percent between 2009 and 2015.

Brake safety violations sideline nearly 2,000 trucks

Many Florida motorists know just how dangerous it can be sharing the road with large commercial trucks. On May 3, a bit fewer than 2,000 trucks in North America were taken out of service on an unannounced Brake Safety Day conducted by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance.

In 33 U.S. states and 10 Canadian provinces, inspectors launched nearly 10,000 inspections during a one-day blitz designed to pinpoint brake safety issues. Out of the trucks inspected, 1,989 were removed from the road for a number of trucking safety violations. Of them, 1,146 were stopped and placed out of service for braking violations.

Improving economy leads to more traffic deaths

Florida motorists may be surprised to learn that the improving economy is causing more Americans to die in crashes involving late-model vehicles, according to a report by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The organization notes that deaths are increasing despite continued improvements in vehicle safety design.

The IIHS calculated that the death rate for 2014 model passenger vehicles is 30 per every 1 million registered vehicle years. This is an increase from 28 deaths per 1 million registered vehicle years for 2011 models. The model with the worst death rate was the Hyundai Accent, with 104 deaths per 1 million registered vehicle years. Meanwhile, 11 other models had a death rate of zero.

July 4 is a deadly day for drivers

Driving in Florida can be hazardous at any time of the year, but the roads of the Sunshine State can be especially perilous during the summer months. Car accident fatalities soar during holiday weekends when the nation's roads are packed with vacationers and revelers, and government data suggests that human error plays a role in most of these deaths. More road users are killed on July 4 than on any other day of the year according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and claims analysis performed by Travelers reveals that more crashes take place on the first four days of July than during either the Memorial Day or Labor Day weekends.

A thriving economy and plummeting gas prices have caused traffic levels to surge, and more cars on the nation's highways mean that more road users will be killed or injured in car accidents caused by distracted, reckless or impaired drivers. While more traffic congestion will generally lead to an increase in accident rates, holiday weekends are even more dangerous because drunk driving and road rage are more common when drivers have attended parties or barbecues and their spirits are running high.

Florida drivers and personal injury protection

When Florida motorists get into car accidents, insurance companies play a large role in dealing with the aftermath. Similar to many other states, Florida law mandates certain types of coverage.

Currently, drivers must maintain personal injury protection, or PIP coverage, as part of their car insurance package. While lawmakers continue to debate changing Florida's no-fault approach, including possible elimination of the PIP requirement, at this time, the law remains in full effect.

Most drivers report having been angry behind the wheel

According to a survey released in 2016 by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, almost 80 percent of drivers said that in the previous year, they had experienced significant aggression, anger or road rage while driving. A small but not insignificant number reported acts of extreme road road including 4 percent of people who said they had left a vehicle to confront someone and 3 percent who said they had deliberately hit another vehicle. It is more than likely that many Florida motorists are guilty of this type of behavior.

Just over half of people surveyed admitted deliberately tailgating someone while nearly half said they had yelled at other drivers. Almost one-third reported making angry gestures, and 45 percent admitted they had honked to show they were upset. Nearly one-quarter said they had tried to prevent another vehicle from changing lanes, and more than 10 percent had deliberately cut off another driver. Almost two-thirds of drivers said aggressive driving is more serious than it was three years earlier, and 90 percent said their safety was threatened by these types of drivers.

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