Driving is the most dangerous thing a person does on a day-to-day basis. Accidents can happen anywhere and at any time, but unfortunately, Florida seems to suffer disproportionately in terms of deadly car accidents. In 2020, Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reported that there were over 340,000 car accidents on Florida’s roads.
Of these crashes, there were 3,133 traffic fatalities in Florida in 2020, making Florida the third deadliest state in the U.S. in the number of fatal car accidents.
There are many reasons for this. Florida is one of the top holiday destination states in the U.S. Its famous beaches, good weather, popular nightlife, and Disney World are among some of the attractions that help Florida’s tourist industry to thrive and bring so many visitors to Florida’s highways. Add to this the fact that that Florida has the highest number of licensed drivers in the country, and it is unsurprising why Florida’s roads are so busy. The greater the number of cars on the road, the more likely it is that an accident will occur. Florida also has particularly high rates of distracted driving, ranking as the nation’s number one for this so-called secondary offense.
The Sunshine State has particularly deadly highways in the summer months. This is for a variety of reasons, including the surge in tourists, the increase in more inexperienced teen drivers of summer vacation, and an increase in drivers under the influence of alcohol and drugs.
If you have been in an accident on one of Florida’s deadly roads and have been economically or emotionally impacted, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact The Law Place today to arrange a free consultation with one of our experienced personal injury lawyers and to help determine whether you could be owed compensation.
Our phone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call today for a free case evaluation at (941) 444-4444.
What Makes a Road Dangerous?
Florida contains some highways that are infamous for their number of yearly fatalities. Many drivers may wonder what makes roads in Florida so dangerous and what they can do to make their daily journeys safer. There are several factors that can make a highway more likely to have a high number of auto accidents, severe injuries, and fatalities.
- Speeding – The posted speed limit is there for a reason. Driving at a higher speed will result in longer braking distances and make the auto more difficult to maneuver or swerve safely if a hazard appears. The Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicle Department(FHSMV) reported that 134 drivers were killed in car accidents in 2019 due to breaking the speed limit. Many accidents caused by speeding are the result of drivers failing to moderate their speed in bad weather conditions, such as fog, heavy wind, or rain.
- Population density – Roads that connect densely-populated regions are likely to have heavily traveled roads, increasing the likelihood of accidents occurring. Florida contains many densely-populated counties and a thriving tourist industry, which unfortunately brings more crashes to its roads.
- Negligent driving – Sadly, many drivers in Florida behave recklessly, such as driving under the influence (DUI), driving while tired or distracted, or failing to obey traffic signals. If you have been hurt in an accident that resulted from negligent driving, then you should seek legal advice as soon as possible.
Which Are Florida’s Most Dangerous Highways?
Florida is one of the most dangerous states to drive in throughout the United States, as six of the ten deadliest highways in the U.S. are located in Florida, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
There are, unfortunately, many drivers who act negligently on busy Florida roads, which can result in serious injuries and fatalities.
The counties with the most car accidents in Florida are Miami-Dade County, Broward County, and Orange County. These densely populated counties contain many of Florida’s most dangerous roads and cause thousands of fatalities every year.
According to these counties, some of the deadliest highways in Florida are:
This interstate highway, locally nicknamed the ‘Haunted Highway,’ stretches around 132 miles from Tampa to Daytona Beach and is sadly known for its deathly fatality rates. It is the busiest interstate in the country, and Teletrac recently reported this highway as the most dangerous highway in the United States based on fatalities per mile. Between 2010 and 2015, this dangerous interstate road experienced 1.41 fatalities per mile.
The stretch of the I-4 that runs from Lakeland to Orlando is particularly deadly. Between 2016 and 2019, 150 people were killed in car crashes along this stretch, averaging around one death per mile.
US-1 runs 545 miles along the eastern shore from Key West into Georgia and is ranked as Florida’s second-deadliest highway. This deadly highway recorded 544 deadly crashes between 2015 and 2019, resulting in 584 road deaths. Along this route, most deaths occurred in Brevard County, Miami-Dade County, and Monroe County.
Interstate 10 is the fourth-longest highway in the U.S., running through eight states across 2,460 miles. One reason suggested for the high fatality rate on this road is the inadequate highway safety measures. Most accidents on this road are caused by crossover crashes when people change lanes unexpectedly, and this interstate road does not have barriers between lanes to prevent this.
This interstate highway spans a total of 471 miles from Florida to Michigan, passing through Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Ohio. This particularly deadly highway experiences an average of 47.2 fatal crashes per 100 miles and is known for its congestion and safety issues.
This road is especially bad during the summer months, as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported this to be the third deadliest highway in the summer months between 2015-2017, with 122 fatal accidents per year on this stretch of road. Unfortunately, the number of traffic fatalities across this stretch of highway has seen an increase in recent years.
Particularly during the summer months, this interstate highway is a dangerous one to find yourself on. The I-95 is the main interstate highway of the Atlantic coast, running 545 miles from Key West into Georgia. This dangerous road saw 158 fatalities during the summer months of 2020, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS).
There is a particularly high fatality rate on a 3.85-mile stretch Express lane of this freeway in the neighborhood Little River in Miami. The NHTSA reported this as having the highest fatalities-per-mile of road segments in Florida, reporting 27 fatalities across the short stretch in one year.
With highways packed with tourists, summer-weather-seeking, and inexperienced drivers on its roads, the State of Florida is, unfortunately, a dangerous place to drive. Florida ranked as the 3rd most dangerous state to drive in throughout the U.S. last year.
Common Causes of Car Accident’s in Florida
Accidents can occur for a wide range of reasons, and sometimes the crash was nobody’s fault. In other cases, accidents are caused by careless or reckless driving, leading to fatal accidents that could have been prevented.
Some of the most common causes of auto accidents in Florida are:
- Distracted driving – Particularly with the rise in smartphone use, more and more drivers fail to notice a hazard because they are distracted by their phones. Texting, watching videos, and scrolling while driving is seriously distracting and make it unlikely that the driver will be paying close enough attention to the road. Especially when driving at high speed, taking your eyes off the road for even a second can have devastating consequences.
- Poor weather – Florida, being named the Sunshine State, may have a reputation for good weather, but the state receives around 59 inches of rainfall every year. Florida also gets hit by a large number of storms and hurricanes every year due to its location on the coast. Heavy rainfall can reduce visibility and make roads slippery, making accidents more likely.
- Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol – Being under the influence of a substance such as these can reduce reaction times and increase the likelihood of reckless driving as it reduces the perception of risk.
- Speeding – The faster that a vehicle is driving, the quicker hazards can appear on the road, and the longer the breaking distances will be.
- Tailgating – This refers to the reckless driving behavior of driving too close to the car in front of you. The Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reported tailgating as one of the most common causes of accidents in Florida in 2020.
- Improper lane changes – Failing to signal correctly or with sufficient time when changing lanes is extremely dangerous and is, unfortunately, the cause of many deadly car accidents.
Far too many accidents are caused by reckless driving. Under Florida Statute 316.208, all drivers in Florida have the moral and legal responsibility to keep other drivers, passengers, cyclists, and pedestrians safe on the road, known as their duty of care. If a driver fails to do this, for example, by failing to follow state driving regulations, tailgating, or distracted driving, then they could be held liable for any injuries that this leads to.
Car accidents on busy highways such as those found in Florida can lead to devastating consequences such as paralysis, traumatic brain injury, and even death. If you or a loved one have been injured because of the actions of another driver on the road, then you deserve to seek justice. Recovering from a serious accident can be emotionally very stressful, and that’s before you consider the potentially huge economic cost.
Medical bills, doctor’s appointments, surgeries, and rehabilitation can quickly build up, leading to economic strain or even bankruptcy for many victims, particularly as medical insurance rarely covers all of these costs. Our personal injury attorneys are dedicated to helping auto accident victims to get the justice and compensation they deserve. Contact The Law Place today to arrange a free case consultation and see how we can help you.
How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me?
Florida is an extremely dangerous place to drive, and every year there are hundreds of victims of reckless driving on heavily traveled Florida roads. If you have been hurt in a car accident in Florida that wasn’t entirely your fault, then you could be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering. Our law firm is proud to contain a team of personal injury lawyers with over 75 years of combined experience helping accident victims like you file successful personal injury claims.
Florida’s Personal Injury Laws
Under Florida Statute 627.7407, Florida is a no-fault state. This means that following a car accident, regardless of fault, you are required to file a claim under your own insurance before you can claim for further compensation. All drivers in Florida are required to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) for this reason, but the minimum $10,000 coverage that most drivers have is rarely sufficient to cover your damages following a car accident.
If your own insurance does not cover all of your damages, then you may be thinking about filing a lawsuit if you believe that the accident was not entirely your fault. Florida operates under a system of comparative negligence in accordance with Florida Statute 768.81, meaning that more than one party can be found responsible for an accident and that the total amount a person can claim from an insurance company will be reduced by the percentage that that person was found to blame for the accident. This means that if your personal injury case awards you $100,000 for your pain and suffering, but you were found to be 25% at fault, for example, then your total payout would be $75,000.
Insurance companies work for a profit, and it’s no big secret that they will do anything in their power to minimize the amount they have to pay out in claims in order to maximize profits. In practice, this means that you will be up against insurance companies who have it in their interest to devalue your claim as much as possible. To navigate Florida’s complex personal injury laws and deal with the tricks and traps of insurance companies, we highly recommend that you seek reputable legal representation.
Contact The Law Place today to arrange a free case evaluation with one of our personal injury attorneys. In this session, you will receive free, no-obligation advice based on the specifics of your case. This session will also give you the opportunity to ask any questions you might have regarding the legal processes. Following this initial consultation, you can decide whether you would like to enlist us to work beside you while you pursue a lawsuit.
If you decide to work with us, you will be assigned a dedicated personal injury lawyer with detailed knowledge of Florida law, who will guide you through the entire process. You won’t have to pay anything up-front and will only have to pay the associated fees if your case is successful. If we don’t help you to secure a payout, then you won’t have to pay a dime.
Your assigned personal injury lawyer will gather relevant evidence to build you a strong case. These could include police reports, CCTV footage, witness statements, etc. They will also be the point of contact between you and any relevant insurance companies so that you don’t have the stress of accidentally saying the wrong thing and devaluing your claim. Our attorneys have lots of experience in dealing with insurance companies and know the techniques and tricks they are likely to use to reduce their payout. Your personal injury attorney will fight to ensure that your rights are defended throughout and that you get the maximum amount of compensation possible for your suffering.
What Damages Can I Claim Following a Car Accident?
Auto accidents are all too common in Florida, a state with some of the countries’ most dangerous highways.
If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident on one of Florida’s dangerous highways, then you are no doubt in serious emotional distress, particularly if the accident was not your fault. Personal injury lawyers can help to ease the economic burden that car accidents can have on victims and their families. A personal injury attorney could help you to claim compensation for the following damages:
- Lost wages
- Medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Wrongful death
If you or a loved one have been the victim of a car accident on one of Florida’s dangerous roadways, then you shouldn’t have to suffer in silence. A personal injury attorney will always fight to get you the maximum amount of compensation possible for your case so that you can focus on your recovery. Call The Law Place today to arrange a free case evaluation, where you will receive relevant legal advice and get an estimation of how much you could be owed.
Our phone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Contact us today to see how we could help at (941) 444-4444.