It may seem like there’s an accident every other time you get on the road – after all, there must be some reason for all that traffic! Exactly how common are auto accidents, though? Let’s explore some data on crashes in Florida, as well as what you can do if you find yourself in one.
The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles collects a lot of data on auto accidents, and every year they compile a Traffic Crash Statistics Report which summarizes their findings. Here is what they reported for 2021:
- In the state of Florida, 2,917 fatalities were the result of a car crash.
- More than 216,681 crashes resulted in some form of injury.
- Speeding was a factor in approximately 2,412 crashes. That’s about 75 percent!
- Alcohol was a factor in 4,984 auto accidents.
- As a result of auto accident injuries and deaths, the medical and work-loss costs in the state of Florida amount to $3.16 billion!
With that data in mind, it shouldn’t come as a surprise if you find yourself stuck in traffic as a result of an accident.
Tampa Auto Injury Attorneys
While those numbers shed light on the frequency of crashes in Florida, they do little to convey the emotional and mental repercussions of an auto accident. If you find yourself suffering from an injury due to an auto accident in Florida, you’ll need to contact an experienced attorney. Whether you’re in Tampa, Brandon, Riverview, Temple Terrace, or anywhere in between, Martin J. Hernandez, Esq. is the right choice to represent you!
Unfortunately, auto accidents happen every day which means either you or a loved one are likely to be involved in at least one auto accident in your lifetime. If you find yourself as part of the statistics of people involved in a car crash, it’s important to immediately seek out representation.
Sometimes car accidents are caused by the negligence of another driver, leaving you as the victim. In addition to the emotional shock, car accidents can also result in major injuries, such as a traumatic brain injury or TBI, spinal cord injuries, or even death. Injuries from an auto accident can be devastating, producing physical pain and suffering, and may have a long-term financial impact.
If the accident resulted in a death, family members of the deceased may want to file a wrongful death lawsuit to get compensation for their loss, grief, and pain. In an unfortunate situation like this one, a knowledgeable Tampa car accident attorney from Martin Hernandez Law Office can help.
What is considered negligence in an auto accident?
The following factors may be considered negligence in an auto accident:
- The Driving Speed: A person driving either too fast or too slowly may cause an accident.
- Drunk Driving (DUI)
- Failure to observe traffic ordinances such as stop signs, red traffic lights, and other traffic signs
- Reckless or careless driving
- Failure to use headlights
- Text messaging or talking on a cell phone
Safe Driving Tips
With all of the traffic and tourists in Tampa, Florida, it might feel impossible to avoid an accident. By practicing safe driving, you can greatly decrease your chances of being involved in an auto accident.
Below are some safe driving tips that every driver should be aware of:
- Always be alert! Avoid driving when tired to keep from dozing off at the wheel and losing control of your vehicle.
- Maintain your focus, without a cell phone. People who talk on cell phones while driving are four times more likely to have an accident.
- Be aware of severe weather conditions! Florida is known for its unpredictable weather. Sudden weather changes have the potential of making driving conditions difficult. Avoid driving in heavy storms and be cautious of high winds. If you must drive, decrease your speed.
- Drive slowly if necessary. In foggy weather, keep your lights on low beam and be wary of vehicles and pedestrians that you may not be able to see.
- Always use your turn signals. By communicating to the other drivers on the road, you can help prevent an accident.
- Avoid tailgating. In the event that a car has to stop suddenly, driving too closely behind a vehicle can result in a rear-end collision.
- Try not to cut in front of vehicles. Cutting in front of vehicles can cause serious and sometimes fatal auto accidents.
- Avoid driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Alcohol impairs one’s ability to make split-second decisions and can negatively affect one’s ability to judge distances when driving.
- Be aware of other cars on the road. While you may be practicing safe driving, other drivers may not. It is important that you always remember you are not the only car on the road.
Unfortunately, even the safest drivers may find themselves involved in an auto accident. If that driver is you, or a loved one, call us at 813.755.9500 and consider it done. Contact our Tampa car accident lawyers for a no-cost evaluation of your case.
What is Florida’s ‘No-Fault’ Law?
You are required to carry car insurance as a driver in the state of Florida, unless you’re a motorcyclist, but what exactly is covered by insurance plans? Florida Statute § 627.730, also known as the ‘No-Fault’ Law, specifies what insurance companies need to do in the event of an auto accident. This law provides that if you are involved in an auto accident your insurance company will cover your medical bills and lost wages up to a certain amount, regardless of who was at fault. If the other party was at fault and caused the car accident, you may only sue them if you meet certain threshold requirements.
These requirements include but are not limited to, significant or permanent loss of a major bodily function, disfigurement or significant scarring, some forms of permanent injury or death. (Florida Statute 627.737(2)).
Bodily injury coverage is optional in Florida. Say you or a loved one are injured in a car accident and the at-fault driver does not carry any auto insurance or has insufficient coverage. In that case, having uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage can protect you.
Uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) bodily injury coverage can cover different expenses including medical bills and lost wages. For that reason, UM coverage is highly recommended and drivers should be sure that each car in their household is covered.
What Should You Do If You Are Involved In An Auto Accident in Tampa?
Whether you are a driver, passenger, or pedestrian, being involved in an auto accident is a traumatic, life-altering event. In a split-second, victims are faced with issues such as injuries, mounting medical bills, questions concerning liability, insurance, property damage, and the prospect of legal action against those who caused the car accident.
Some accidents are so severe that drivers may face vehicular manslaughter charges. Hiring an experienced attorney can make the legal process run much smoother for you.
What to do after a Tampa car accident?
- Try to get the contact information from anyone that was involved or witnessed the auto accident.
- Collect the insurance information from all parties involved in the car accident. This includes insurance companies and insurance policy numbers.
- Collect the vehicle information of all the vehicles involved in the accident.
- Take photographs or draw a diagram of the accident scene and write a detailed description of the auto accident. This can be helpful when proving your accident claim.
- Call the Police, and make sure to get a copy of the police report.
- See a doctor (if injured) within 14-days of the accident or lose the benefits you pay for.
- Even if you feel alright or you do not believe that you need a doctor, keep in mind that some injuries take time to present themselves. The Florida auto accident attorneys at Fernandez & Hernandez Law advise all of our clients to see a physician as soon as possible after an auto accident.
- Keep track of your losses.
- If you are unable to attend work, make note of how many days you have missed. Keep a log of all extra expenses you’ve had to cover for any injuries and save all of your medical bills.
- Contact a Florida Auto Accident Lawyer at Martin Hernandez Law Office.
Why Martin Hernandez Law Office?
The Tampa auto accident attorneys at Martin Hernandez Law Office are well versed in the process of making and managing an auto accident claim. Do not call just any car accident attorney in Florida; contact the best of the best.
The best part about the Martin Hernandez Law Office is that once you call us you can rest assured that your case is in good hands. We can be reached at our offices 7 days a week at 813.755.9500. You may also visit us online to get started with your free consultation today.