Articles Posted in Motor Vehicle Accidents

Holidays are often cause for gathering, good food – and spirits. Although we typically think of New Year’s Eve as the most boozy, it’s Thanksgiving weekend that has the worst track record for drunk driving crashes and deaths.Thanksgiving drunk driving

More than 800 people died on U.S. roads over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend (Wednesday evening to Sunday evening surrounding the fourth Thursday in November) in a recent five-year period. That’s according to the National Safety Council and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Even more were seriously injured in drunk driving crashes. Forty-five percent of drivers involved in fatal drunk driving crashes over the holiday weekend were between the ages of 21 and 34.

Some have taken to calling these alcohol- and marijuana-laden holiday gatherings “Blackout Wednesday” and “Danksgiving.”. Upserve reports bar sales for beer increases 270 percent for  for beer 114 percent for liquor over the Thanksgiving holiday. Continue reading

If you’re thinking of allowing someone to borrow your car, you may want to think twice. Florida’s longstanding dangerous instrumentality doctrine allows vehicle owners to be held vicariously liable for the negligent actions of those permitted to operate their vehicle. It can even apply to Florida vehicle owners when crashes occur in other states (more on that later).Palm Beach car accident lawyer

The dangerous instrumentality doctrine holds that an owner of an inherently dangerous tool can be legally responsible for any injuries that result from operation of that tool. Most people don’t consider cars to be “tools,” but they were established as such by the Florida Supreme Court in the 1920 decision of Southern Cotton Oil v. Anderson. The effect of that ruling was that vehicle owners could be subject to strict vicarious liability, meaning that basically the owner – and everyone whose name is listed on the title – could be held financially responsible for a crash as if they themselves were in the driver’s seat. Continue reading

Driving while impaired carries a definite stigma. But driving distracted often still does not – even though we know it kills hundreds of people in Florida every year. October is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, an effort that aims to change that. West Palm Beach injury lawyers

Drivers who are distracted are a threat not only to themselves but everyone else on the road. Looking away from the road for even just a few seconds can double your risk of a crash.

As West Palm Beach injury lawyers, we understand that distracted and impaired drivers are actually quite similar to each other. like those who are impaired by substances, drivers whose attention is momentarily diverted have significantly reduced reaction times. They may swerve about the road. They may not realize they’re speeding or approaching an intersection or stopped traffic.

According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, distracted driving was verified in 213 fatal crashes in 2018 resulting in 231 deaths. Among the riskiest distractions:

  • Use of a cell phone (texting in particular).
  • In-vehicle technology (including GPS).
  • Passengers in the vehicle (particularly hazardous with younger drivers with passengers of the same peer groups).

Continue reading

People are hurt every day in Florida in all different kinds of accidents. For example, there are nearly 700 people are injured in Florida car crashes every day. An average of 1.2 boating accident injuries occur in Florida daily. Nationally, there are approximately 30 million injuries every year due to unsafe consumer products. These are just a few examples, but despite the commonality, there remains a great deal of misunderstanding about personal injury claims.West Palm Beach injury lawyers

Our West Palm Beach injury lawyers are writing today to help clear up some Florida injury lawsuit myths. Continue reading

The number of motorcycle enthusiasts in Florida continue to grow. So too do Florida motorcycle accident injuries. In a single recent year, more than 550 riders and operators were killed in Florida motorcycle crashes – more than in any other state in the country, including California, which has a larger population and is also known for year-round sunny weather.South Florida motorcycle accident injuries

As our West Palm Beach injury lawyers recognize, motorcyclists are the most vulnerable group of road accident victims. And although each crash is different, certain injury patterns are noted to be more common for motorcyclists. Not only are motorcyclists more likely to be in an accident but they’re more likely to be seriously hurt – primarily because there is no heavy-duty hardware between them and the pavement. Determining the type and severity of injuries is one of the first steps to filing a claim for damages in a crash case. Continue reading

Can a company that sold synthetic marijuana to a man who later became intoxicated on it, drove and crashed, killing three people, be held liable for those deaths? The Florida Supreme Court will decide. West Palm Beach wrongful death lawyer

A jury in Tallahassee awarded family members of the three victims $37 million after the 2012 crash. The driver was a defendant in that case too. However, as our South Florida wrongful death attorneys can explain, the only hope the family would have of a payout anywhere close to that would be if the verdict against the synthetic pot manufacturer was affirmed. However, a three-judge panel with Florida’s 1st District Court of Appeal overturned that verdict in June, finding the maker of the intoxicating substance couldn’t be held liable because the sole cause of the victims’ deaths was the criminal conduct of the driver.

Now, the case is being appealed to the highest court in the state. Continue reading

Americans have been driving less in recent months, and some auto insurance companies recently announced they’ll be extending financial breaks to policyholders through June. That may help more drivers hang onto their policies, but many have already had their coverage either canceled or reduced. Even before the Florida unemployment rate topped 13 percent, the Sunshine State had the highest percentage of uninsured drivers at nearly 27 percent. If you’re in a Florida auto accident with an uninsured driver or an underinsured driver, it’s important to understand your rights as well as the means by which you can still be compensated.West Palm Beach car accident attorneys Continue reading

Teenage drinking and driving continues to be a serious problem in Florida and throughout the country. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 1 in 10 teenagers (16 and older) in high school has driven after drinking at least once in the previous month. Young drivers (those under 20) are 17 times more likely to die in a fatal car accident when they have a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.08 compared to when they aren’t drinking. West Palm Beach injury lawyer

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported in December 2019 that 26 percent of fatal crashes in Florida involved a drunk driver (someone with a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher). Seventeen percent involved someone whose BAC was nearly double the legal limit.

We all know there are criminal consequences to drunk driving, such as arrest, conviction and imprisonment. Administrative penalties can include fines, community education requirements and mandated ignition interlocks. But our South Florida wrongful death attorneys in West Palm Beach want to underscore that civil remedies may also be available to victims. As a recent fatal drunk driving case out of Gainesville shows, there may actually be several avenues of accountability. Continue reading

With more children and families sticking closer to home this summer, the risk of a Palm Beach bicycle accident resulting in severe injuries is higher than ever. Safe Kids Palm Beach County reports that traumatic injuries suffered by children in Palm Beach County bicycle accidents has shot up nearly 170 percent in recent months. Eight kids were treated locally for serious bike crash injuries in just five weeks.Palm Beach injury lawyer

The non-profit kids’ safety organization indicated most of the bicycle accidents involved collisions with cars. More than 90 percent of riders treated at local hospitals weren’t wearing helmets and suffered some type of brain injury.

“Kids think they’re invincible,” the SKPBC director told WPTV recently.

That may be true, but our Palm Beach County injury attorneys want to stress it doesn’t give a free pass to drivers who are distracted, speeding or otherwise careless – particularly in residential neighborhoods where one would expect to see more children on bicycles right now. The failure of a child to wear a helmet won’t excuse a negligent motorist from liability either. Continue reading

Online shopping has soared in recent months. Supermarket News reporting online grocery sales rose 20 percent last yer and are poised to spike 40 percent this year. CNBC reports digital sales of traditional retailers like Target and Best Buy are up more than 250 percent, while Amazon delivery sales are up 25 percent in the first quarter. But who is liable if one of the growing number of delivery vehicles is involved in a Florida car accident? grocery delivery accidents

The answer depends on the company for whom the driver is delivering.

Every driver on the road in Florida by law must have valid auto insurance. Companies will generally provide employee drivers with commercial auto insurance, which would cover crashes that occur in the course and scope of employment.

As our West Palm Beach car accident lawyers can explain, many delivery service drivers are considered independent contractors rather than employees. That means it may be incumbent on the driver’s own auto insurer to cover damages for grocery delivery accidents. Some insurers have denied coverage because insured’s failed to purchase any add-ons for business use of their vehicle. Auto insurance companies will conduct thorough research on accident claims before they pay. If the driver was using the vehicle for business purposes at the time of the crash, the insurer will undoubtedly find out about it. Claims can be denied if the at-fault driver did not have appropriate insurance. Continue reading

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