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Tampa Personal Injury Law Blog

How do Florida truckers avoid truck accidents?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is the agency that establishes rules and regulations for buses and large trucks that are aimed in large part at protecting public safety across the country, including Florida. FMCSA's enforcement efforts are being redoubled in view of recent statistics that showed 3,514 people were killed in vehicular accidents involving large trucks in 2012. The agency has determined that too many of these crashes were caused by inattentive truck drivers.

Distracted driving is a great concern among federal and state transportation authorities as well as motorists. Distractions can take drivers' attention from the road and cause them to miss seeing other motorists, motorcyclists and pedestrians. According to the FMCSA, cellphone use is the leading cause of distraction-related truck accidents. For this reason, the agency together with the Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration published rules this year that forbid interstate bus and truck drivers from using cellphones while operating their vehicles. The rules apply to all commercial vehicle drivers, but truck drivers who transport hazardous materials and goods are of particular concern.

Florida's motorcycle accident death rates are high

People have their own reasons for choosing the vehicles that they want to drive. The same goes for Tampa, Florida, residents, who prefer motorcycles as their means of transportation. Many motorcyclists prefer motorcycles over cars or passenger vehicles because they are more cost-effective. Others enjoy motorcycles because of their flexibility in traffic. However, as more people decide to choose motorcycles, the chances of getting into a motorcycle accident increase.

In fact, fatalities as a result of motorcycle accidents are already high in Florida. According to a study released by the Governors Highway Safety Association, the number of people dying in motorcycle crashes nationwide has climbed. Motorcycle fatalities increased in 2011 after declining to nearly 4,200 in 2009. In 2012, almost 4,000 motorcyclists were killed just from January to September. Based on the data used in the study, the number of fatalities will continue to rise. Of the different states that have experienced this rising death toll, Florida ranked high. The study showed that the number of motorcycle deaths in Florida was constantly on the rise. The state had 287 fatal motorcycle crashes from January to September of 2012.

Florida cyclist in critical condition after hit and run accident

Aside from motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles, peddling a bicycle allows the rider to enjoy the beauty of the outdoors in Tampa, Florida, while at the same time being cost efficient and more environmentally friendly than other vehicles. However, bicyclists are no different from motorcycles when it comes to risk of injury on the road. Cyclists are more vulnerable to serious injury even in a slight collision with a motor vehicle.

The Florida Highway Patrol is actively looking in Tampa for the driver of a burgundy sports utility vehicle that was involved in a bicycle-car accident. According to sources, a 56-year cyclist was hospitalized after an SUV allegedly struck him on a local road, where both the car and cyclist were traveling in the same direction.

Death in Florida may result in wrongful death claim

Florida residents do not die exactly the same way. Some may have been killed in car accidents, on the job or possibly from an ill-fated disease. However, if someone's death stems from the negligence of another individual or company, the victim's surviving family may find itself in a great deal of distress.

Fortunately, there are laws that are designed to hold negligent parties liable for fatalities that resulted from their actions. When someone dies due to the misconduct or negligence of another, the victim's family can choose to pursue a claim against the offending party. But bringing a successful wrongful death claim depends on certain elements. These include the death of the individual, as well as the monetary injury incurred by the surviving family as a result of the fatality. The primary element in a wrongful death case would be the potential negligence caused by another or the intent to cause harm.

What is a slip and fall accident?

The most common cause of personal injury claims associated with premises liability law is a slip and fall accident. Slip and fall is a term used to describe a situation in which an individual slips or trips while present on the property of another person or entity. For example, a shopper might slip and fall at a grocery store because there was spilled milk on the floor. Such incidents fall under the category of premises liability claims.

In slip and fall accident cases, an owner or person who maintained the property may be held legally accountable if the injured person can prove that the accident was caused by a dangerous condition. The legal responsibility of the property owner can be established if it falls within one of several situations.

Our experience with motorcycle accidents is a valuable asset

Many Americans, including Floridians, enjoy riding motorcycles for pleasure, as well as for basic transportation. These vehicles offer a variety of advantages, such as low operating costs and the ability to move quickly through even the densest traffic. Unfortunately, motorcycles also have a downside, which includes higher risks of accidents with greater chances of serious injuries and death.

Our law firm knows the potential outcome of any motorcycle accident, especially when an accident involves a collision with a larger vehicle. The result can be catastrophic, either seriously injuring or killing riders and passengers because they lack protection from other vehicles, fixed objects such as light poles and the road surface itself. On the other hand, passenger vehicles offer both crashworthiness and driver and passenger protection. The only protections that riders have are helmets and safety gear such as jackets, gloves and boots. Unfortunately, helmets cannot protect other parts of the body and injuries ranging from broken bones to spinal cord injuries are frequent and often fatal.

Florida woman wins $4.3 million for car accident injuries

Doing more than one thing at a time seems as if it would be a wise use of someone's time and abilities. Unfortunately, when it comes to doing things that require extended periods of focus, multitasking is a bad idea. As many Floridians know, it is especially perilous when someone is driving.

Every driver is responsible for knowing that almost every use of a cellphone or smartphone is a bad idea when a driver is behind the wheel of a vehicle. Unfortunately, one driver allegedly used his mobile phone while driving in December 2010 and became involved in a car accident with a tractor-trailer that ended up severely injuring his 26-year-old girlfriend. According to the lawsuit filed by the woman, the car being driven by her boyfriend at the time was eastbound on a county road when it entered U.S. Highway 1 and was hit by the tractor-trailer. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the driver of the 2004 Mitsubishi Montero Sport ran a stop sign and went directly into the path of the oncoming truck. FHP investigators determined that the driver of Mitsubishi was texting at the time and did not notice the stop sign or oncoming traffic.

What statistics show about trucking fatalities across the country

Tampa residents are probably used to sharing the roads with large commercial trucks such as tractor-trailers. These vehicle move two-thirds of the freight across the United States with nearly 11 million trucks traveling the road each year. Despite this large number of trucks, they only make up 4.7 percent of all vehicles in the country - but 12.4 percent of all fatal vehicular accidents. The fatality rate for truck accidents is 17 percent higher than the fatality rate for passenger vehicles.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is the agency charged with helping to reduce the number of commercial motor vehicle accidents in every state, including Florida. The FMCSA recently noted that the rates of truck accidents and fatalities have started to rise after several years of declines. The most recent data for truck-related accidents is from 2011 and shows a total of 3,757 people killed and 800,000 people suffering serious injuries from commercial vehicle accidents.

Who is liable for premises liability accidents?

Premises liability laws are in place to help protect consumers and visitors from injuries, meaning that safety should be the primary responsibility of property owners. This includes for those who own a shopping mall, store or any other establishment. Premise liability laws are in effect in all 50 states, including Florida.

The legal gist of premises liability law is that it holds owners accountable for accidents and injuries that occur on their property if certain conditions exist. Lawsuits out of premises liability are often seen when slip and fall accidents, falling crates and amusement park ride mishaps occur. When visiting a mall, if you are injured as a result of a falling object on the premises, for example, the mall's owner may be legally responsible for the incident's outcome. Determining a responsible party for a premises liability accident may depend on where the incident occurred. For example, if an injury was suffered in an elevator accident because of a mechanical problem, the property owner may bear the responsibility for medical treatment and other damages.

OSHA investigates fatal accident at FSU construction site

Construction sites are often dangerous because of the use of heavy equipment, hazardous conditions, and excessive heights. In fact, construction workers have some of the highest rates of workplace fatalities.

A recent, sad illustration of that fact was the death of a 25-year-old man employed by Culpepper Construction, a subcontractor on a building site at Florida State University in Tallahassee. According to FSU Police and the Florida State Police, the fatal accident occurred when the worker was trapped between a moving elevator and a building that was under construction. The victim was a Culpepper plumber.

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