There are only a few things that can be as disturbing as the exponential rate at which the annual number of car accidents increase in Florida and all across our country. We are about to review car accident statistics for 2018 released by the State of Florida.
We are nearly five months into 2018, and it makes sense to review how many car crashes there have been in Florida so far to compare the numbers to the previous years.
Our Pembroke Pines car accident attorney Bradley Hartman argues that knowing how common motor vehicle accidents are and what causes them can actually help drivers across Florida to become more attentive and increase their safety when driving.
How many car accidents have there been in 2018?
As of April 16, 2018, there have been more than 106,000 car accidents this year in Florida, with over 67,000 injuries and over 780 fatalities, according to Florida’s Integrated Report Exchange System.
While the prevalence of car accidents in Pembroke Pines and all across Florida in the first four months of the year is not as bad as it was over the same period in 2017 (when there were over 119,000 crashes in that period), it is nonetheless disturbing.
Last year, nearly 390,000 car accidents were reported in the state of Florida, with a total of more than 247,000 people injured and nearly 3,000 fatalities in 2017. While these figures may not tell you much – after all, we read about horrible car accidents every day – it is hard not to notice that car accidents have been on the rise for years.
In fact, our Pembroke Pines car accident lawyer from the Law Offices of Bradley Hartman reminds readers that there were only 230,000 car crashes in Florida in 2011. Six years later, there were 390,000 accidents. So what is the catalyst and culprit behind those additional 170,000 crashed over a six-year period?
What causes motor vehicle crashes in Florida?
According to statistics, there are three leading causes of car crashes in Florida:
- driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (nearly 15% of all fatal accidents)
- failure to yield (nearly 12%)
- and speeding (nearly 7%).
However, such factors as distracted driving (text and drive, cell phone use), road rage, aggressive driving, driver exhaustion, and poor road and weather conditions are also common reasons why residents of Pembroke Pines and other parts of Florida get into car accidents.
So what has changed over those six years that brought an additional more than 170,000 annual car accidents in Florida? Our Pembroke Pines car accident attorney argues that smartphones may be to blame.
In 2011, only 29.8 percent of the U.S. population owned a smartphone. Six years later, in 2017, a whopping more than 67.3 percent had a smartphone, which means the number of Americans using smartphones more than doubled over that period.
Why smartphones can be deadly drivers
Having a smartphone in your car within arm’s reach makes it super easy to get distracted while driving: to answer a call, respond to a text message, view Google Maps, play another song, or by simply watching a YouTube video from your phone.
In fact, multiple studies have shown that drivers that get distracted by their phones while driving make the same mistakes as drunk drivers do (let’s not forget that DUI is the leading cause of fatal crashes in Florida).
While Florida lawmakers are considering to allow police officers across the state to pull over drivers for texting, currently the police can stop drivers who are text-and-driving only if they are violating another traffic rule.
Meaning: distracted driving caused by smartphone is currently considered to be a secondary offense, which may be the biggest problem behind Florida’s unhealthy relationship with car accidents.
If you have been in a car accident in Pembroke Pines or elsewhere across Florida, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. Contact the Law Offices of Bradley Hartman to get a free consultation about your particular case. Call our offices at 954-438-1000 or fill out this contact form today.