Whether you were behind the wheel of a vehicle that caused a rollover accident or were the victim of a driver under the influence, being involved in a car or truck accident is far from a favorable experience. Dealing with the aftermath  – including recovery from injuries, coping with the loss of a loved one, medical bills, or financial insecurity – can be downright stressful. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control, car accidents continue to be the leading cause of death in the United States, totaling more than 35,000 in 2015. A majority of these accidents were caused by driving under the influence, distracted driving, and weather conditions. The State of Florida accounts for nearly nine percent of those deaths. Florida has the third highest population of all states in the nation, so it’s not surprising there are more vehicle accidents causing fatalities and injuries than other states. 

According to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) there were 198,213 vehicle accidents in Florida during 2019 – which averages to 543 accidents per day. Of these accidents, 1,643 resulted in fatalities and 126,249 reported injuries. 

If you’re doing the math, that means 64% of all Florida car accidents resulted in injuries requiring medical attention. Of those injured, approximately 16% suffered incapacitating injuries. An incapacitating injury is defined as an injury resulting in loss of normal function (i.e. walking, driving) that the person was able to perform prior to the accident. Keep in mind passengers, as well as drivers, may be injured or die in a vehicle accident. 

Alcohol and drug-related accidents continued its steady increase in 2019. More than 6,100 crashes were caused by impaired drivers under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. In Florida, and much of the United States, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle if your BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) is .08% or higher. 

While vehicle accidents are not 100% avoidable, practicing these defensive driving techniques can greatly reduce your risk of becoming an accident statistic:

  • Stay alert and focused.  Alert drivers are far less likely to be distracted by the unexpected. By paying attention to the road, you maintain a fast and reliable response time. This allows you to slow down or move away from impending hazards. 
  • Expect the unexpected.  Mistakes happen often, and driving is no different. Other drivers can make unexpected maneuvers and errors that could cause accidents. Learn to expect and prepare for anything that could happen while driving. 
  • Maintain a safe distance.  The rule of thumb is to leave one car length per every 10 mph of speed you’re traveling; the distance should be even greater in inclement weather. This gives you enough reaction time and space to stop if the road conditions warrant it. 
  • Don’t speed.  Speeding is the cause of 26% of all traffic fatalities in the United States according to the Department of Transportation. Follow the posted speed limits and reduce your speed to accommodate road circumstances if necessary. 

Accidents happen, and when they do, you and your family will have questions about your rights and the impact on your life. The attorneys at Doran, Beam & Farrell understand your concerns and are ready to answer any question or address concerns that you may have about your claim. To schedule a FREE consultation, call us at (727) 846-1000 or complete our online contact form. 


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