Last updated 29 days ago
Florida is one of the most dangerous states in the nation for motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists. Florida’s See The Blind Spots campaign is designed to raise awareness about this issue and provide residents with the resources to prevent serious pedestrian accidents.
Although we’ve already covered how Florida is home to two of the deadliest highways in the nation (the I-95 and I-4), the See The Blind Spots campaign has compiled some shocking statistics which demonstrate exactly how dangerous the roads are for pedestrians and bicyclists alike.
Statistically, nine pedestrians are killed every week in Florida, and 21 are severely injured every day. Although drivers typically shoulder most of the liability in the event of a pedestrian accident, an estimated 50 percent of fatal pedestrian crashes in the Tampa Bay area occur as a result of people failing to follow pedestrian laws and taking ill-judged risks such as jaywalking or walking on the side of the road.
Bicycle-auto accident figures are similarly high throughout metro Florida areas, with fatality rates more than double the national average. Although bicycles have the same legal status as automobiles and can legally share the roads, they are much less noticeable—especially to distracted drivers. Considering that drivers are at fault in only 61 percent of recorded bicycle accidents, it is also important for bicyclists to practice road safety at all times, even when there are no visible vehicles.
These numbers provide just a snapshot of how negligence on Florida roadways all too often leads to permanent injuries or even death. If you or someone you know has been injured due to another person’s carelessness behind the wheel, then contact Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D., who has more than two decades of experience in cases involving auto collisions and medical malpractice. Call (407) 329-3923 today to set up a professional consultation.
Last updated 1 month ago
Although Florida no-fault auto insurance covers medical bills regardless of who is at fault in an auto accident, it does not cover property damage to your vehicle. Considering that Florida is one of the most expensive states for auto insurance, determining fault after an auto collision is crucial for protecting your finances and your family. Most auto accidents occur as a result of negligence. Speeding, aggressive driving, texting and driving, and other driver distractions are a recipe for disaster.
Although the state of Florida does not currently legislate against cellphone use driving, scientific studies have repeatedly demonstrated its impact on driver performance. In fact, texting while driving creates a crash risk that is 23 times worse than non-distracted driving. Every second a driver is looking at his or her phone is a second in which the conditions for a deadly accident can develop.
In some cases, mechanical failure resulting from inadequate repairs or poor quality replacement parts can directly impair handling and contribute to an auto accident. In this case, the repair shop or even the auto manufacturer may be partially or totally responsible for property damages. Be sure to check your vehicle make and model for defects and recalls on the National Highway Traffic Safety Association’s website.
Auto collision victims are usually responsible for proving fault in an auto accident, which is why it’s important to be prepared for an emergency. Keep a detailed record of the damages and surrounding area with photos, file a police report, and write down insurance and contact information for all parties involved. Be aware that failing to receive timely medical attention from a licensed professional could jeopardize your insurance claim.
An auto accident can cause serious bodily harm and affect your livelihood, so it is important to discuss your case with an experienced auto collision attorney. Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D. has been providing Florida residents with legal guidance and representation in cases involving personal injuries, auto collisions, and medical negligence for more than 20 years. You can schedule a free initial consultation by calling (407) 329-6923 today.
Last updated 1 month ago
Potholes are a common annoyance on Florida roadways, and they can cause potentially serious damage to your car. While it may seem like common sense to avoid them altogether, inclement weather and lack of light can impair your vision and pose an auto accident hazard.
Studies show that the average American driver spends approximately 20 hours per week behind the wheel. Most of these hours are spent on the same routes and, if you are like most drivers, chances are that you’re not paying complete attention during the entire commute. While you don’t have to memorize every detail of the roads around you, it’s important to take note of any road hazards on your regular routes. This information can help when it’s too dark to see; even if your headlights can illuminate the road ahead of you by 200 feet under ideal conditions, it only takes about four seconds to cross that distance at 35 miles per hour.
Potholes typically pop up on roadways—sometimes overnight—during extreme temperatures or after large storms, which can be a problem since drivers’ handling is already impaired. Water seeps in through cracks in the pavement and softens the material, and the cumulative stress of traffic eventually causes the pavement to break down.
During wet weather, a deep pothole can appear as an innocuous puddle—until you drive over it. Running over a pothole can damage your tires and your suspension. If your car does have a flat, pull over to a safe location as quickly as possible to avoid damaging the rims as well. If you notice any pulling to one side after hitting a pothole, then it’s likely that you will need to have your car realigned.
Motorists have a responsibility to drive safely, but simple negligence results in tens of thousands of auto accidents every year. If you or a loved one has suffered from an auto accident due another driver’s negligence, then contact the Law Offices of Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D. at (407) 329-3923 today for a professional consultation.
Last updated 1 month ago
Nobody should have to deal with an auto accident, but if and when you do encounter one, do you know what’s protecting you? Here is a closer look at some of the most popular standard safety features in newer cars.
Electronic Stability Control
Electronic stability control (ESC) is known by various proprietary monikers, but they all fulfill the same basic function: minimizing oversteer and understeer by detecting traction loss and redistributing braking forces accordingly. ESC has been mandatory in all vehicles since 2012, though it is a common feature in earlier models.
While this may seem like more of a comfort feature than a safety device, head restraints are essential for preventing whiplash in an auto accident. Whiplash is one of the most common injuries following an auto accident, and it can result in lifelong pain and limited mobility.
Seat belts have helped saved millions of lives, and most states—including Florida—have mandatory seat belt laws. Newer cars are even equipped with inflatable seat belts that reduce strain on the torso in the event of a major collision.
LATCH Child Seat Restraints
Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) systems are required in all vehicles built after 2002, and they are designed to make the installation of child seats simpler and eliminate incompatibilities. In spite of these attachments, studies show that three out of every four car seats are improperly installed and secured. You can protect your children in the event of an auto collision by following installation instructions.
Newer air bags are designed to deploy more efficiently in order to avoid causing injury to the passengers. Several newer cars are incorporating multiple air bags in the side panels, though these features are not yet standard.
Unfortunately, none of these advanced safety features are guaranteed to protect you from a negligent driver. If you have sustained an injury in an auto accident, then contact Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D., who has been helping Florida residents protect their rights for more than 20 years. For more information, call (407) 329-3923 today.
Last updated 1 month ago
The Florida Department of Transportation’s Road Rangers Service Patrol has been an invaluable asset in making major interstate highways safer for all motorists. If you run into trouble on the interstate, then you should know that roadside assistance is only a phone call away.
FDOT Road Rangers can provide various services to motorists who have become stranded or disabled on the highway. Florida motorists can simply dial *FHP (*347) to receive assistance for jump-starts, tire changes, minor emergency repairs, limited fuel, and first aid. These roadside assistance services are free and are designed to shorten traffic incident durations and reduce auto collisions.
But FDOT Road Rangers do more than provide roadside assistance; they also keep roadways safe by performing highway cleanup after accidents and laying down sand in poor weather. FDOT Road Ranger personnel can also dispatch flares, reflective cones, and flashing arrow boards to redirect traffic from hazardous debris or construction areas.
Road Rangers provide statewide service to most major expressways in various counties, including Florida’s Turnpike, the I-95, and the I-4. Follow the link for a full list of FDOT Road Ranger service areas.
Considering that Florida’s I-95 and I-4 are two of the most dangerous highways in the United States, having quick access to roadside assistance is essential for maintaining a superior level of highway safety. In places where the highways can widen to as many as 12 lanes, traffic congestion can easily conceal major road hazards and stranded motorists until it is too late.
The Law Offices of Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D., is here to provide you with the resources you need in order to protect your rights and keep your family safe. If you have found yourself injured in an auto accident due to another driver’s carelessness, you can set up a free initial consultation through our website or by calling (407) 329-3923.