Posts Tagged ‘broward car accidents’

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How to handle a medical claim when rear-ended

September 15, 2010

I was recently rear-ended (in FLA) while stopped and attempting to enter onto a highway. There was minor damage to my car. My two kids in the back were not injured. I suffered some neck/back pain, both new injury and aggravation of an existing condition. When I reported accident to my insurance, I was informed that my insurance, which has been automatically drafted from account for 10 years, had lapsed. I wasn’t aware of this but corrected the situation ASAP. I am not looking to make any money (or war# but am wondering if the other insurance company will pay medical bills #chiro) when they learn of my coverage. I am prepared to pay out of pocket for medical especially if a fight is anticipated. Any advice? Thanks!

Answer:

Nikki, since your accident occurred in Florida, I will presume you live in Florida.  I am aFlorida accident injury lawyer, so I can tell you how Florida law applies. But, if you live somewhere other than Florida, the laws are most likely different and you should consult with an attorney in your area.

Florida is a “no fault” insurance state for car accidents.  This means that no matter who is at fault for causing the accident, your initial medical bills are to be covered by your own car insurance coverage.

Florida Statute section 627.736 requires that all drivers and owners of cars in Florida purchase personal injury protection coverage (PIP).  PIP coverage covers 80% of your medical bills and 60% of your lost wages, subject to any deductible, and usually with a cap of $10,000.  If your PIP coverage lapsed, you are responsible for your medical bills and lost wages.  There is nothing in Florida accident injury laws that makes the at fault party’s insurance coverage responsible for your medical bills.

You can still pursue a claim for your injuries, lost wages, medical bills above and beyond what your PIP should have paid, and pain and suffering against the at fault party, and his/her insurance company.  Even if you do not have PIP, if you were injured in the accident, you should get checked out by a doctor to rule out any serious or permanent injuries.

If your injuries do not go away, you should speak to a Florida car injury accident lawyersoon.  An experienced Florida car accident lawyer will know how to best proceed even if your PIP coverage has lapsed.

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Texting While Driving: A Leading Cause of South Florida Car Accidents

July 30, 2010

We’ve all been there: driving along and watching either an oncoming car or a car in front of us cross the center line of the road and weave back and forth across it. Chances are that the driver of the car was sending a text message on a cell phone and was distracted enough to not realize the danger he or she was causing. We all know that talking on a cell phone while driving is distracting and dangerous, but driving while trying to read or send a text message is even more unsafe and dramatically increases the chances of causing an auto accident. While adults with many years of driving experience should not be doing it, the problem becomes even worse when teenagers with limited experience get behind the wheel and begin texting while driving. Statistics tell us that more than one in three drivers aged 16 to 17 admit sending or receiving a text message while driving in the last month and more than one in five experienced adult drivers admit that they also have sent or received a text. Many people don’t realize it, but texting while driving is comparable to driving while legally drunk.

South Florida car accidents are caused by many things and anything that causes drivers to take their eyes off the road is a contributing factor. Repeatedly, studies have shown that talking on a cell phone while driving is extremely distracting. But, did you know that these same studies show that texting while driving is the most dangerous of all cell phone-related activities? Drivers who are sending and receiving texts while driving must take their eyes off the road an average of 4.6 of every 6.0 seconds of drive time in order to accomplish the task. This means that these texting drivers are only watching the road and operating their vehicles at 25 percent of their capacity!

Because of the danger of texting while driving and the increase in South Florida car accidents and those throughout the state, the Sunshine State is working on passing a law that would ban texting while driving. This law is based on scary statistics:

  • One in five adult drivers send texts while driving.
  • A driver who texts is six times more likely to cause an auto accident than a drunk driver.
  • Texting drivers take their eyes off the road for nearly five seconds at a time which, according to reports, is enough time to travel the length of a football field at 55 miles per hour.
  • Most Americans admit that talking on a cell phone and texting are two of the most dangerous things to do when driving. Yet, 67% admit to making phone calls while driving.
  • 20 percent of drivers with cell phones say they text while driving. Among drivers under age 35, that number jumps to 47 percent.
  • Studies indicate that distracted driving causes one out of every four U.S. crashes.
  • According to the Florida Times-Union newspaper, "a California study found that a ban [on texting and driving] in that state reduced texting by 70 percent."

Don’t wait to become a South Florida car accidents statistic – stop texting while driving and get there safely!

For more information about compensation for your injury from South Florida car accidents contact the Florida auto accident lawyers at Joseph M. Maus, P.A.at 1-866-556-5529 or email them today.

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South Florida Ranks Third in Pedestrian/Car Accidents

February 26, 2010

Pedestrians beware:  Florida’s roadways can be hazardous to your health. The Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Traffic Statistics Report states that 502 pedestrians were killed in Florida car accidents across the state in 2008 alone.
Furthermore, a study by Transportation for America reported that, though the national average for pedestrian deaths is 1.26 per 100,000 people, Florida averages almost 2.5 times that amount or 3.02 pedestrian deaths per 100,000 people. This is due in part to the recession and cutbacks to services which require people to use more public transit or to walk more often.

If you are a walker, hiker, or biker, you might want to think about changing your habits if you live in Florida. Researchers at the Surface Transportation Policy Partnership developed the Pedestrian Danger Index (PDI) in the 1990s in order to establish a level playing field for comparing metropolitan areas based on the danger to pedestrians.The most dangerous areas for pedestrians in the state are Orlando/Kissimmee (Pedestrian Danger Index: 221.50) and Tampa/St. Petersburg (Pedestrian Danger Index: 205.50), with South Florida coming in at a close third in the rankings. Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach
has a Pedestrian Danger Index of 181.2. Compare this with metro-Atlanta which only rates a Pedestrian Danger Index of 108.3!

Florida’s rapid growth also contributes to the problem. When a state gets a large influx of people, things like bike paths and sidewalks get put on the back burner so the state can keep up with the traffic increases.
In a recession, budget cuts force the state to scale back even more. Transportation for America reports that although 16.9% of Florida traffic deaths were pedestrians, just 1.5% of Federal transportation funds allocated to the state are spent on pedestrian and bicycle projects.

Walkinginfo.org gives tips that can pedestrians use to avoid being a South Florida car accident statistic:

  • Wear bright/light colored clothing and clothing with reflective materials – make sure you can be seen by drivers in all types of lighting (sunny, rainy, night time, etc).
  • Don’t assume vehicles will stop; make eye contact with drivers, don’t just look at the vehicle. If a driver is on a cell phone, they may not be paying enough attention to drive safely.
  • Don’t take chances – cross at cross walks and obey traffic signals instead of trying to rush across an intersection between cars.
  • LOOK before crossing – don’t just rely on traffie signals – the driver may be rushing to beat the light.
  • Carry a flash light when walking at night.
  • Stand clear of buses, hedges, parked cars or other obstacles before crossing so drivers can see you.
  • Always walk on the sidewalk; if there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic.
  • Stay sober; walking while impaired increases your chance of being struck.
  • Don’t wear headphones or talk on a cell phone while crossing.

They also give tips to help drivers avoid hitting pedestrians in South Florida car accidents:

  • Yield to pedestrians, even if they are where they shouldn’t be.
  • Look carefully behind your vehicle for approaching pedestrians before backing-up, especially small children.
  • Scan the road and the sides of the road ahead for potential pedestrians.
  • Before making a turn, look in all directions for pedestrians crossing.
  • For maximum visibility, keep your windshield clean and headlights on.
  • Do not use your cell phone while driving.
  • Never pass/overtake a vehicle that is stopped for pedestrians.
  • Use extra caution when driving near children playing along the street or older pedestrians who may not see or hear you.

For more information about pedestrians and South Florida car accidents, contact the Florida auto accident lawyers at Joseph M. Maus, P.A.at 1-866-556-5529 or email them today.

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