Car accidents are a very serious problem in the state of Florida. They are a leading problem of injuries and death and result in billions of dollars spent in medical and work loss costs. Read on to learn some of the more notable car accident statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), plus what you can do to reduce the likelihood of an accident or injury.
Number of Injuries and Deaths in Florida Annually
Florida car accident statistics from the CDC reports that more than 2,450 people were killed on Florida roadways in 2013. Florida’s Highway Patrol confirms this number, reporting over 315,000 crashes, 198,000 injuries, and 2,400 fatalities each year from 2013 to 2017.
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The Cost of Car Accidents in the State of Florida
According to the CDC, a total of $3.16 billion is spent each year as a result of crash-related fatalities. Of that, $40 million goes to medical costs and $3.12 billion is the result of work loss expenses.
The Costs Are Not Just Economic
Fifty-nine percent of the fatalities were motor vehicle occupants, with the remaining consisting of motorcyclists, bicyclists, pedestrians, or unspecified parties.
The High Cost of Drunk Driving
In the United States, approximately 33% of crash deaths involve drunk driving. From 2003 to 2012, 8,475 people were killed in Florida car accidents involving a drunk driver. The majority of those deaths were adults between the ages of 21 and 34. Florida car accident statistics from the CDC also report that Florida drivers are more likely to drive under the influence, with 2.1% of drivers reporting that in the last 30 days they have driven after drinking too much. That is higher than the 1.9% national average.
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Most Common Causes of Car Accidents
A wide variety of things can cause car accidents, and most of them are preventable. Some of the most common include:
- Distracted driving: Distracted driving is a very common cause of car accidents. Anything that causes a motorist to take their eyes off the road is a distraction, whether it is eating food, sending a text, talking on the phone, turning to look at a passenger, changing the radio, or looking at the scenery.
- Speeding: Speeding has always been a problem on Florida roadways, as drivers push the limits to reach their destination more quickly. Not only do high speeds increase the likelihood of an accident by making it more difficult to avoid an accident, but they also increase the likelihood of fatalities.
- Drunk driving: Drinking impacts a driver’s ability to see, focus, and function normally, making it very dangerous to operate a moving vehicle.
- Reckless driving: Chances are you have seen cars tailgating or darting in and out of traffic to avoid slowing down. This type of driving behavior is reckless and likely to cause an accident.
- Drowsy driving: Drowsy driving is a much larger problem than most people realize. According to the CDC, one in 25 adult drivers report having fallen asleep while driving within the last 30 days. It is estimated that driving while drowsy caused 72,000 accidents, 44,000 injuries, and 800 deaths in 2013.
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Action You Can Take to Save Lives
You can take several actions to reduce the likelihood of an accident:
- Keep your eyes on the road at all times.
- Keep both hands on the wheel.
- Wait three seconds before entering an intersection after a light change.
- On the highway, leave enough distance between you and the car you’re following so that if they were to suddenly stop or swerve, you could avoid them.
- Be aware of blind spots.
- Be courteous to other drivers.
- If you choose to drink, make sure you use a ride-sharing app, have a designated driver, or take other means to stay off the road.
In addition to accident-prevention, there are a few additional steps you can take to keep yourself and your family as safe as possible if a car accident does occur:
- Wear a seat belt.
- Keep children in a proper car seat or booster seat through the age of eight.
- Adjust your seat, so you are as far away from the airbags as possible in the event of a deployment.
- Adjust the wheel, so it is pointed at your chest, not your face.
Call Our Team If You or a Loved One Was Injured in an Accident
If you or a loved one has been injured in a Florida car accident, contact the dedicated team at Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers. We offer a free, no-obligation consultation where a member of our team will review your case. Call us today at (855) 529-0269 before the statute of limitations under FL § 95.11 runs out.
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