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Distracted Driving Accidents are Big Time in Florida

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If you have been involved in a an SUV or car accident in the Tampa Bay area call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353.
Tampa Personal Injury Lawyer Martin Hernandez

Distracted Driving Accidents are Big Time in Florida

– By: Your Tampa Injury Attorney Martin Hernandez

Once again Florida drivers are proving they can’t text and drive.  Florida ranks second to worst for distracted drivers according to EverQuote, an online insurance firm.  As a Tampa personal injury attorney, I frequently hear clients talk about seeing the person behind them texting and driving immediately before the accident.

Florida Ranked Number Two in Distracted Drivers

The study, which was conducted through EverQuote’s motion-sensing Everdrive app, logged 2.7 million vehicle trips throughout the United States and measured driving behaviors such as; sudden acceleration, speeding, hard braking, and other aggressive movements while motorists were using their cell phone. The study found that more than 90% of drivers polled used their cell phone while driving and Florida ranked second worst for distracted driving, according to their point-based analysis.  Only Louisiana drivers ranked worse.

Worse than that is that the number of crashes caused by distracted drivers is growing. Last year in Florida more than 50,000 accidents resulted from drivers who weren’t focused on the road.

The greatest number of crashes is caused by young adults—people who are 20-to-29 years-old.  Florida Highway Patrol Captain Tom Pikul says crashes in that age group are often linked to technology use.  The Florida Highway Patrol said distracted driving crashes have increased 25 percent since 2013, and more than 200 people died in distracted driving crashes in Florida during 2017.  According to NHTSA, 3,450 lives were lost in 2016 because of distracted driving.  Worse are people are not being distracted by their cellphones as much “in-car technology” such as in higher end cars.

Distracted Driving in Florida Causes Serious Accidents

According to Florida’s Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, almost 50,000 car accidents were attributed to distracted driving last year alone. These accidents amounted to roughly 4,000 serious personal injuries and over 200 wrongful deaths to Florida drivers. However, State Officials believe these numbers may be low end as people generally don’t readily admit that they were on their cell phone just prior to their accident that they caused.  As a Tampa Personal Injury lawyer, I would agree with the State Officials.

Shockingly, the Florida Department of Highway Safety & Motor Vehicles lists 379,928 as the number of total car crashes in Florida for 2017 which resulted in 2,777 fatalities (down from 395,860 total car crashes and 3,177 fatalities in 2016). The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that distraction contributes to 16% of all fatal crashes.

With this many statistics that support the danger of distract driving, then one must wonder why doesn’t the Florida legislature do something about it?  “They grew up with technology and its harder for them to put down the phone and pay attention to what they’re doing on the roadway. And we want to stress that it is a violation to drive and text,” Pikul says.

New Florida Law on Distracted Driving

Under Florida law, police are prohibited from pulling over a driver specifically for cell phone use because texting while driving is not a “primary offense“. This means that officers must cite other driving offenses before adding distracted driving to the ticket. Florida, is only one of five other states (Iowa, Nebraska, Ohio, and South Dakota) where police cannot pull over motorists for texting while driving as a primary offense. This may soon change.

The Florida House of Representatives in 2016 co-sponsored a bill that would make texting while driving a primary offense. It is believed the enhanced legislation will help to curtail cell phone use while driving, limit distractions, and thus decrease car accidents in the state of Florida. But is cell phone use the only culprit to blame for distracted driving?

In-car Technologies Causing Distracted Driving

With advancements to the technology manufacturers offer in their vehicles, the short answer is no. Cars today come equipped with navigation screens, Bluetooth capabilities, WiFi, and the like, all of which is made quickly available by touch screen. Unfortunately, the problem with cutting-edge technology is that it does not always work seamlessly. Put that technology in a car and drivers will undoubtedly get distracted from time to time and that’s when accidents can happen.  Higher end cars with all of the new technology it comes with is proving to be more dangerous as driver’s eyes are taken off of the road for longer periods of time while they are driving.

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety research notes that once motorists have completed a task on their touch screen or personal cell phone, they still aren’t fully engaged with their driving responsibilities for, on average, a subsequent 27 seconds after the task. They’ve described the phenomena as “distraction latency”.

To combat the issue, some manufacturers have installed programs into their vehicles that prohibit the use of smartphone technology when the car is in motion and synced with the driver’s phone. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has recommended that all car manufacturers adopt this technology.

Additionally, car insurance companies offer lower premiums to drivers who willingly submit to cell phone use monitoring and claim to award motorists for positive behavioral patterns. However, these “promotions” may instead aim to punish drivers who demonstrate repeated patterns of reckless driving. This could actually mean higher insurance premiums instead of lower.

As a Tampa personal injury attorney, we litigate accident cases on behalf of Florida’s injured drivers and have discovered distracting driving to all too often be the cause of the injury. Given the alarming statistics of accidents and fatalities caused by distracted drivers in Florida, it is clear that motorists in Florida should be weary of inconsiderate drivers who believe they can’t wait to answer that text message or read that email. As someone who sees the negative effects first hand, believe me, it can wait.

If you were involved in a car accident, our injury accident lawyers at Fernandez and Hernandez.  We will investigate your case and help you obtain compensation for your injuries.

Call us today for a free consultation and case evaluation with an experienced accident injury attorney.  Contact us at (813) 229-5353 or contact us at: https://injurylawyersoftampa.com/seeking-justice/

https://youtu.be/jLets8eatpI

 

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16:18 29 May 20
I had nothing but good experiences with Martin. He goes to great lengths to get the job done and makes sure you are... aware of all of your responsibilities. He will talk to you one on one and keep you up to speed. I am sincerely grateful and appreciative of his hard work and effort in my case.read more
Dustin Walker
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12:56 26 May 20
Martin handled my case well. He was on top of everything and it seemed like my case went smoothly. I actually enjoyed... meeting with the doctor he referred me to. I wouldn't hesitate to refer Mr. Hernandez to anyone that needed legal help.read more
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15:05 15 May 20
Martin and his team got me paid very fast. I got into an accident and 30 days later they got me more money for my car... and all the money there was and all within 30 days. These are the best injury lawyers in Tampa. Hire them and don't go anywhere else.read more
albert mckinzi
albert mckinzi
13:16 13 May 20
I am very thankful for the wonderful job that Martin and his awesome office staff did to settle a case for my grandma.... As people age, they do have trouble understanding legal matters and terminology & can get bewildered at times. They were very patient and explained everything in a way that could easily be understood. In this fast-paced world finding someone to have patience with older people shows true care for a client and their level of integrity, which means the world to us! I highly recommend them to anyone in need of his services. Our only disappointment was not knowing about him sooner. Thank you so much.read more
Luis Atencio
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00:55 07 May 20
The right attorney for the right legal assistance! Definitely five stars for the great legal assistance of the... attorney Hernandez and his staff. Very knowledgeable and lavish with his time, I feel very satisfied with his assistance as well with the help of his assistant Sofia, which led to a satisfactory results on my case.read more
Valerie Anderson
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18:17 28 Apr 20
First I want to say Thank you Mr Hernandez for your service in our community. I truly recommend Martin for your legal... needs. My Mom had a case pending when she passed.not re Not related to the accident but Martin went over and beyond to make sure me and my brothers was compensated. Keep up the good work Mr Hernandez we ruly appreciate you.read more
Jinnifer Stanley
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15:39 07 Apr 20
I was in a car accident and like some people weren’t sure how to handle it. I called a few lawyers but Mr. Hernandez... was the one who appeared to be more interested, not only as a lawyer but also as a human being. He made the process very smooth. He was a very great man and a lawyer. I am very thankful to him. I would recommend him to anyone.read more
Daniel Fernandez
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21:18 05 Mar 20
Martin Hernandez is highly regarded lawyer and a 5 star attorney. He and his staff are on top of their game. We... highly recommend this law firm and will tell you that you will not regret hiring this law firm.read more
Liliana Alvarez
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19:33 02 Mar 20
Martin Hernandez and Daniel Hernandez are the best lawyers ever. They helped us a lot and we got great results. Thank... you!read more
Benjamin Blevins
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17:19 21 Feb 20
This is the best auto accident lawyer in Tampa. I was involved in a car accident and did not know what to do, who to... call, who to see, find a doctor that could help me, or even what to say. I called Martin Hernandez and he sat down with me and explained everything from beginning to end. He quickly resolved me my case and got me the most amount of money possible. When people ask me who is the best lawyer in Tampa? I always Martin Hernandez is the best auto accident attorney in Tampa..read more
dylan harper
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17:09 20 Feb 20
Martin was able to explain my case to me very well. I got good advice on what my particular options were and an honest... assessment of what I should expect going forward. When the world is falling around you its best to ask the smartest, hardest working person you can find what to do, and then do it.read more
Carmina Wilson
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16:39 19 Feb 20
I had an absolutely amazing experience with Martin’s firm. I had incurred personal injuries as a result of a bad auto... accident. His team not only treated me with respect, but they also made me feel like I was their only client. They handled my case with an astounding amount of expertise. Martin and his team is a lifesaver.read more
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15:17 05 Feb 20
I was in an accident lately and he was suggested by a friend. He met with me in person and was very punctual. He was... very calm and determined throughout my entire situation. Overall, I was extremely satisfied and impressed with Martin in reaching very positive results. I would recommend him and his office to anyone for solid advice and bottom-line results. Thank you again!read more
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22:29 06 Jan 20
My experience with Martin Hernandez has been stressful not on his part. Martin has been very patient with me when I... wanted to pull every strand of hair from my head. From day one he took time to explain the process of how this was going to be but he would be there to hold my hand all the way and he did just that. His paralegal Angela walked with and held both my hands as well during all of this. When I couldn't get ahold of Martin she would make sure he got everyone of my messages. I would use his services again and recommend him to anyone. Thanks so much for all you have done and I'm forever grateful.read more
Russell Craig
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20:51 19 Dec 19
Very pleased with how the case was handled. I hope to never be in this position again as it was a stupid mistake but... with the help of Martin Hernandez I didn’t even have to appear in court on my own. I highly recommend using him and his team, you wont be disappointed.read more
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22:34 14 Nov 19
Worked with Martin in Tampa, Florida. He executed on everything he promised. A well run organization. He called me... back very quickly whenever I reached out, if not answering right away. Definitely would recommend Martin to my friends and family. Thanks again for everything.read more
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Martin Hernandez and his entire staff are extremely friendly,caring,knowledgeable, and treat you like apart of the... family. I hired Martin approximately 2 years ago. My case was a complicated one. But Martin Hernandez did an absolute amazing job. I was always kept current of what was going on with my case. Anytime I called, if Martin was unavailable his hard working staff got the answers I needed. I would recommend Martin Hernandez to everyone. He's dedicated to each case. If you're looking for a lawyer who doesn't just represent you,but welcomes you like family to his firm, Here's your answer. If I could give 50 stars I would. Thank you Martin& staff for all you did. Kimberly Mclendonread more
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14:49 01 Nov 19
Martin is the absolute sweetest most understanding lawyer I have ever met. He is very knowledgeable of every situation... and will get you the money that you are deserved. His staff is amazing I love everyone there I couldn't speak more highly of all of them. I would recommend Martin and his staff to my family and anyone who is in need of an attorney don't waste your time with others go see Martin he will take care of you !read more
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09:32 26 Oct 19
Martin is very professional, marvelous , and meet all expectations far as handling my family law case.I strongly... suggest him to anyone who is in need of the best lawyer in Florida. Finest lawyer I've ever meet and i thank him for winning my case . He'll be hired by me anytime needed.read more
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21:17 24 Oct 19
Great service. They took my case and guided me throughout the entire process with care and kindness. Thank you!
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21:02 27 Sep 19
He has been very helpful as my attorney and made himself available whenever I needed. There has been multiple times I... wanted to just take a deal to get it over with but he has continued to work for me to get me in the best situation possible. He is very easy to work with and passionate about helping. He is not just a great lawyer but also a great human being!read more
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15:51 13 Sep 19
My needs were met and the firm was invested in my case and me as a person. They were easily accessible, return phone... calls and emails promptly. Aggressive, when it was require and got the job done. Martin and his staff all produced the quality of an attorney and firm that anyone would want to hire.read more
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Amazing attorney!! Martin Hernandez and his firm are the best you'll find. I have known Martin for years and he has... helped my sister and friends in their car accident cases. I can't say enough good things. He is very knowledgeable, kind, and will treat you like family!read more
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