While motorcyclists in the northernmost states may have to store their bikes for the winter months, Florida riders can enjoy their freedom all year long. This winter, riders in Fort Lauderdale and throughout the area should continue to ride safely and be aware of some particularly challenges that may create potential hazards for riders. In addition to distracted driving, Florida motorcyclists should remember that roads are more crowded during the winter months, as many riders will flock to enjoy the weather that Florida has to offer year-round.
Motorcycle safety is critical. Our Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident attorneys are dedicated to protecting the rights of our clients and helping accident victims recover after a collision. We understand that motorcycle accidents can result in serious, life-altering injuries. Our priority is to help accident victims and their families recover maximum compensation so that they can have the support they need to move forward after a catastrophic injury.
In 2011, there were 4,612 motorcyclists killed according to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) National Center for Statistics and Analysis (NCSA). This is a 2% increase from statistics reported in 2010.The increase in motorcycle deaths could be the result of an increase in riders as well as more distractions on the road. Of these accidents, 94% were drivers of the motorcycle and the other 6% were passengers. According to these reports, the fatality rate for motorcyclists in 2011 was 6 times the fatality rate than other passenger car occupants. These statistics highlight the very dangerous nature of motorcycling and should pose a warning to riders and other drivers throughout the state of Florida.
As a winter destination, riders should be wary that accidents can increase with highly populated roads. In addition to high speeds and distracted driving, riders can also be more vulnerable to any reckless driving on the roads. While older drivers may be more experienced, statistics show that the 40 and up age bracket made up 44% of all motorcyclists killed in 2002 and 56% in 2011. Within this age group the fatalities increased by 78%. All motorcyclists, regardless of age or experience must take necessary precautions during the winter months and year round to ensure safe riding.
Riders are at a greater risk of injury when they collide with another vehicle. Motorcyclists are also at risk of reckless driving and hit and run cases. In 2012, there were 70,000 hit-and-run crashes, up from 500 in 2012. In November, a 29-year-old a motorcyclist was struck and left for dead by a suspect who exited his car and run. Police officers claim that the driver could have stayed and possibly helped the victim but instead chose to run.
A new crime bill would stiffen mandatory sentences for those who flee the scene of accident involving fatal injuries. The new penalties would mean at least 10 years behind bars and significantly more if the driver is also convicted of DUI. Advocates of the new law claim that state law should not reduce penalties for those who leave the scene. Under current law, drivers can benefit from leaving the scene in a hit-and-run crime. According to reports, a hit-and-run fatality occurs weekly in Broward, Palm Beach, and Miami-Dade counties. Statewide, there are 32 people killed every week by hit-and-run drivers.
Contact Freeman Injury Law for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-561-7777.
More Blog Entries:
Speed Blamed for Fatal Coral Springs Traffic Collision, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, January 4, 2014
South Florida Brain Injuries: Concussions No Minor Matter, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, December 13, 2013