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St. Augustine, Florida, Auto Accident Injury Compensation Blog

Autonomous bus crash occurs shortly after initial deployment

Technology across the nation is developing at a rapid pace. Ideas that once seemed to be only the stuff of science fiction are now becoming a part of reality. For example, the current development and testing of autonomous vehicles may mean that one day driverless cars will become commonplace. However, people in Florida may wonder, what happens if a driverless vehicle is involved in a collision?

Recently, in Las Vegas, an autonomous bus that had been deployed for the first time just two hours earlier was struck by a semi-truck. Reportedly, however, it was the truck driver who was at fault, not the autonomous vehicle. Fortunately, no one was injured.

Don't go back and forth in figuring out how to handle whiplash

As you drive to work, your mind may feel consumed with thoughts about the upcoming activities of the day, such as the seminar you have to teach, the business meeting and cooking dinner once you get home. However, all of a sudden, a nearby car hits you without warning, thus forcing your mind to return to the present from the future.

These types of car accidents can easily happen in Florida due to another driver's carelessness. In some cases, you may suffer injuries, with whiplash injuries being one of the most common types. Fortunately, you have the right to seek justice following this type of injury accident.

Steps to take if you are involved in a car accident in Florida

You may be heading down Interstate 95 or one of Florida's other streets or highways, minding your own business and concentrating on the task of driving when suddenly, "Bam!" -- you've been struck by another driver. Car accidents can be frightening and confusing, especially if you are injured. However, they do happen, so it is important to know what to do if you are involved in a car crash.

First of all, stay at the scene of the accident. If a motorist strikes another motorist, and flees the scene, they could not only be liable to the injured motorist, but they could also face criminal charges as a hit-and-run driver. Second, assess the situation and determine if anyone is hurt or has been killed. Unless it is necessary to avoid further harm, do not move a person who is not conscious or has neck or back injuries. Call 911 or the police.

Florida man killed in hit-and-run accident

In Florida, it is not unusual for people to walk to their destinations. However, while pedestrians might take every precaution, such as walking on sidewalks, using crosswalks and obeying traffic signals, this doesn't mean that they will be immune to accidents.

In one recent incident, an automobile was traveling northbound when it struck a 59-year-old man who was crossing the road. The driver, however, did not stay at the scene of the crash, but instead fled. According to authorities, the pedestrian had the right-of-way, as he was attempting to cross the road in a crosswalk. Police are looking for the hit-and-run driver. The vehicle, according to police, would have sustained damage to its front-end.

Driver fatigue in Florida can be as dangerous as drunk driving

Companies in Florida and across the nation rely on semi-trucks to transport their goods from one destination to another. In fact, semi-trucks provide a necessary service that allows for interstate commerce, which is vital to a healthy economy. However, driving a semi-truck takes skill, and semi-truck drivers have to obtain a special license in order to operate their vehicles. There are also laws and regulations in place that dictate how long a trucker can be on the road before stopping to take a rest break. Nevertheless, truckers sometimes ignore these rules and drive while they are fatigued. In fact, according to one expert, driver fatigue may be as dangerous as drunk driving.

Driver fatigue is a factor in around 1.2 million motor vehicle accidents. When a driver is fatigued, they have a decreased attention span, they may not be aware of their surroundings and their response time is limited. One expert maintains that if a person operates a motor vehicle after being awake for 18 hours, the effects are the same as they would be if the driver had a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.05 percent. If a person operates a motor vehicle after being awake for 24 hours, the effects are the same as they would be if the driver had a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.10 percent. This is above the legal limit of 0.08 percent.

Is the scope of distracted driving crashes underestimated?

A fatal car accident can occur in many ways. While most in Florida may understand that drunk driving or breaking traffic laws can lead to a fatal accident, they may underestimate the problem of distracted driving, particularly when it comes to cell phone use.

After years of decreasing fatalities in motor vehicle accidents, traffic deaths in the United States shot up 14.4 percent. In fact, in 2016, over 100 individuals lost their lives daily due to motor vehicle accidents. These numbers have not been seen since 10-years ago.

Bicycle accident statistics show many injuries, fatalities

People in Florida are fortunate that the pleasant weather allows them to bicycle year round. Bicycling is healthy, environmentally-friendly and, for some people, just plain fun. However, while only one percent of all trips in the nation are made by bike, bicyclists are more susceptible to injuries and fatalities if involved in an auto accident than occupants of an automobile.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 1,000 individuals riding bikes died and nearly 467,000 were injured in accidents in 2015. The most bicycle fatalities involved those between the ages of 50 to 59. In addition, men were six times more likely to be killed in a bicycle accident and four times more likely to be hurt in a bicycle accident than women.

Five-vehicle truck accident in Florida injures three, kills one

Some people in Florida may think that truck accidents occur mainly on busy streets and highways in major metropolitan areas. However, truck accidents can take place anywhere at any time, as one recent crash shows.

The Florida Highway Patrol reports that one person lost his life, and three others suffered injuries following a five-vehicle collision in rural Martin County. The accident occurred when a milk truck was traveling westward and four pickup trucks were traveling eastward. The milk truck, which was empty at the time, for some reason drifted into the opposite lane, striking each of the pickup trucks.

Ridesharing in Florida Reduces Drunk Driving

It used to be the case that if one wanted a ride home after a night on the town, they had to hail a taxicab, take the bus or ride with a designated driver. However, with the advent of ridesharing, such as Uber or Lyft, Floridians can use an app to summon a ride home after a night of drinking.

This may be a good thing, as the increase in usage of ridesharing services has correlated with a decline in drunk driving injuries and fatalities in Florida. From 2013 to 2016, the usage of ridesharing apps has gone up, while drunk driving injuries and fatalities have gone down. In 2013, there were 477 deaths and 830 injuries.

Florida Highway Patrol officer hit by motorist on I-95

It is not unusual to see police officers in Florida on the side of the road, particularly on busy highways. The officers may be "clocking" for speeders or they may be on the lookout for drunk drivers or conducting a traffic stop. It is important to drive carefully when approaching officers in such situations. The failure to do so could cause a serious car accident.

A Florida Highway Patrol officer was injured recently after being hit by an automobile on Interstate 95. The officer, age 51, was standing outside his patrol car on the shoulder of the interstate when the incident occurred. He was utilizing a speed-measuring device when a motorist switched lanes, striking another motorist. That second motorist then lost control of their automobile and struck both the officer and the officer's vehicle. The officer was sent to an area hospital with serious injuries.

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