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St. Augustine, Florida, Auto Accident Injury Compensation Blog

Punitive damages are available for DUI accidents

Most people in St. Augustine, Florida, know by now that drunk or drugged driving is very dangerous behavior. This blog has discussed countless cases where a drunk driver has left a Floridian seriously injured or even dead, even though countless public service announcements and law enforcement efforts have reinforced the importance of driving sober.

When someone loses a loved one to or gets hurt by a drunk or drugged driver, it may therefore seem that just asking for one's out-of-pocket expenses and lost wages, and even one's non-economic damages like pain and suffering, just is not good enough.

Head-on collision kills 1, seriously injured another

An accident in nearby Jacksonville claimed the life of one man and left another person seriously injured recently. The accident, which also left a child with what police called minor injuries, involved a head-on collision between two vehicles.

The accident happened on a busy city street in the early evening hours. For some unknown reason, the man who died crossed the center line and in to an oncoming vehicle, causing the head-on impact.

Florida's "Move Over" law and distracted driving

Like other states, Florida has what is commonly referred to as a "Move Over" law. Although most drivers in St. Augustine know they need to pull over for emergency vehicles, the Move Over law goes one step further.

Under the Move Over law, a motorist must give at least one additional lane of berth when approaching a stopped emergency vehicle, like a police car or an ambulance. The same rule applies to vehicles like tow trucks, utility trucks and sanitation vehicles that may be stopped along a multi-lane highway or interstate.

Florida law requires everyone to stay at the scene of a crash

Fear can be a powerful motivator, especially after a car accident. Even if your actions did not lead to the crash or contribute to it, you may feel compelled not to be around when police arrive.

The problem with that is that it is against the law. Under Florida law, all parties must remain at the scene of an accident until or unless released by police. However, as is the case with any law, there could be circumstances under which you do not need to remain at the scene.

Injured pedestrians will likely need compensation

St. Augustine, Florida, is a great place to ride a bicycle or take a walk. The weather is warm enough to be outside throughout the year, and there are plenty of beaches and other wonderful sights to take in.

While people should have every right to enjoy Florida on foot or traveling by bicycle, some motorists do not recognize this or do not take the safety of pedestrians as seriously as they should.

Florida's odd 10-day license suspension rule

While in many respects, Florida is just as tough on drunk driving as other states, recent stories about drunk drivers causing severe accidents have highlighted a loophole in Florida's laws that allows drunk drivers to immediately return to the streets even after an arrest.

In Florida, a person who refuses to submit to a chemical test after being pulled over on suspicion of DUI or who has a test that shows they are over the .08 legal limit will face an administrative license suspension. However, before the suspension goes in to effect, the person by law gets the benefit of a 10-day temporary license.

Florida near the top of the list for fatal hit-and-runs

A previous post on this blog talked about how the number of deadly hit-and-run accidents has been increasing across the country in a trend that can rightly be called disturbing.

For its part, Florida ranks near the top of the list of states for the frequency of fatal hit-and-run accidents. Per 100,000 residents, the number of deadly hit-and-run accidents averages over 1.0. By contrast, states with a relatively low rate of such accidents experience less than .5 fatal hit-and-runs per 100,000 residents.

Hit and run motorist kills bicyclist

A bicyclist in nearby Jacksonville died after an unknown motorist hit him. According to reports, the motorist fled the scene of the accident and has not been identified.

The victim, in his early 50s, reportedly was an avid bicyclist who used his bike as his primary means of transportation. Neighbors remembered the man fondly and encouraged whoever hit the man to come forward. The man was less than a mile from his home when he was struck and killed.

Pedestrians particularly vulnerable to teen drivers

A recent study of the number of teen drivers involved in fatal accidents may well have confirmed that inexperienced drivers pose additional hazards on the road.

This is not surprising since, after all, a beginning driver is naturally more likely to make mistakes the same way as a beginner in any other skill would. Moreover, although this isn't universally true by any stretch of the imagination, some teens do not always exercise the best judgement and responsibility when they are on the road.

Review of Florida's Dram Shop law

One of the things a personal injury attorney will do is help a victim prove that a drunk or distracted driver was negligent or reckless and then, upon doing so, demanding that the driver's insurance company pay the full extent of the victim's injuries.

However, St. Augustine drunk and distracted driving injury lawyers are often tasked with the important responsibility of finding other sources of compensation, so that victims can be sure to have the money they need to continue to live their lives despite a serious injury.

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