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Deadly Car Accidents On the Rise in Florida

More traffic wrongful death data from Ft. Lauderdale car accident lawyer Joseph Lipsky,while the number of people killed in traffic crashes in 2017 exceeded 37,000, a drop of nearly 2% from the prior year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; according to the World Health Organization, the number of traffic-related deaths rose to move than 1.35 million last year. The WHO’s report on Road Safety determined that deaths from car accident are now the 8thleading cause of death, resulting in more than $800 billion dollars of damages world-wide last year alone.

And of course, Florida again is considered one of the most deadly states for car accident deaths, partially due to some of the most lenient driving laws in the country.

Car accident dangers are evaluated in the study in 5 categories including occupant protection, child passenger safety, teen driving, drunk driving and distracted driving. Florida drivers demonstrated some of the most dangerous behaviors resulting in 2,922 fatal crashes with over three thousand car accident wrongful deaths in 2017.U.S. crash deaths fell slightly in 2017 but still reflected the second-deadliest year on the road in the last decade. As expected, given Florida’s recent rise in legal marijuana use, some of the most frequent causes of deadly car accident include drugged driving and distracted driving.

One of the ways to change the momentum and further decrease the likelihood of deadly car crashes is by more aggressive legislation. Currently Florida has minimal laws regarding seat belts and distracted driving, such as only front seat passengers being required to use seat belts, studies recommend that Florida’s legislature pass more driving safety laws, including:

▪ Rear seat passenger seat belt law.

▪ Requiring all-rider motorcycle to use a helmet. Currently motorcycle drivers over 21 with $10,000 in medical insurance coverage are permitted to ride without helmets.

▪ Rear facing child car seat requirement through age 2.

Mandatory booster seat law.

▪ Changing the age from 15 to 16 for a learner’s permit.

▪ Raising the age from 16 to 18 for unrestricted license for teen drivers. Currently get a driver’s license at 16 in Florida, if written and road tests are passed.

▪ Requiring ignition locks for all DUI offenders that would stop them from driving if the user fails a breath test.

▪ Implementing text messaging restriction.

▪ Cellphone restriction. Twenty states and D.C. lack optimal laws restricting cellphone use for teen drivers.

This uptick in traffic deaths is particularly concerning with regards to the number of pedestrians killed along U.S. roadways, which rose to its highest level in nearly 30 years, with more than 6000 pedestrians were killed in 2018. The reason for the increase in pedestrian traffic deaths is significantly tied to the exponential growth of pickups and SUV on the road. These bigger and heavier vehicles cause more significant injuries.

With Florida being one of the most deadly states from pedestrians, additional legislation may prevent some of the more deadly driving behaviors. Including:  Further education about drowsy driving, which is a factor in nearly ten percent of all car crashes. And, putting more restrictions of users of now legal medical marijuana.

We at the Ft. Lauderdale car accident lawyer offices of Joseph Lipsky, P.A. believe that some common sense laws by our legislature would save lives, making our roads safer for motorist, pedestrians and cyclists.

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