In Florida, as in any other state, all drivers have a duty to drive in a careful and prudent manner so that they can avoid endangering others’ persons or property. If a driver breaches that duty and injures someone, the driver may be held liable for injuries and other damages. Whether a driver was operating the vehicle reasonably depends on the circumstances of each case. For example, traveling at the posted speed limit may be reasonable under good weather conditions, but it may be unreasonable in a snow storm.
Florida law requires drivers to carry at least $10,000 in personal injury protection coverage. This covers medical costs up to the policy amount in the event of an accident, regardless of who was at fault. Drivers also must have a minimum of $10,000 in coverage for property damage. However, in the event of a serious accident, these minimum amounts often do not cover all of the damages an injured person incurs.
Motorist Deaths Increased by 6% in 2016
Data released by the National Safety Council showed that motor vehicle accident deaths in the U.S. rose 6% in 2016 as compared to 2015. According to one news source, the numbers increased 14% compared to data from 2014. The National Safety Council’s numbers are similar to those found by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which found an 8% rise in accident deaths in the first nine months of 2016. Motor vehicle accident deaths amounted to about 40,200 in 2016, which was the first time since 2007 that they were over 40,000.
Inexpensive gasoline and a healthy economy encouraged Americans to drive more, and this resulted in a 3% increase in vehicle miles traveled. However, the head of the National Safety Council explained that this increase did not fully explain the rise in accident deaths. She stated that people have become complacent in their driving, citing a National Safety Council study that found that 47% of drivers are comfortable texting while driving, 16% said they do not always wear seat belts, 25% are comfortable speeding on residential streets, and around 10% reported driving drunk.
The research group called for a ban on mobile use behind the wheel, even with hands-free use. It also said mandatory ignition interlocks should be required for drunk drivers, and there should be a three-tiered licensing system for new drivers under 21.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
At Friedman, Rodman & Frank, our Miami personal injury attorneys use nearly 100 years of combined experience to advocate for those who have been injured in accidents due to the careless or wrongful conduct of others. Our goal is to secure the maximum amount of compensation possible for the type of injury sustained by our clients, including punitive damages when deserved. We handle all cases on a contingency-fee basis, which means we only get paid if your case reaches a successful resolution. If you have been involved in a car accident in Miami or elsewhere in South Florida, contact our office to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Miami accident attorney. Call 877-448-8585 to schedule a free consultation today.
More Blog Posts:
Employer’s Failure to Conduct Thorough Background Investigation May Be Basis for Liability in Employee’s DUI Accident, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published February 22, 2017.
State Supreme Court Affirms Dismissal of Claim Against Teacher in Wrongful Death Lawsuit, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published February 2, 2017.