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Fewer Drivers, Fewer Car Accidents in Weston, elsewhere

A recent article in St. Petersburg Times reports that fewer drivers are using the roadways because of the economic turmoil facing many families.

Weston car accident attorneys know that times are rough, but we are approaching the busiest travel time of the year with extra caution. Tourist season and holiday travel always makes Florida roadways more congested and therefore more dangerous for everyone who travels.

Roadways are less populated in Hillsborough County, according to the article and more importantly, citations for bad driving fell dramatically in 2010. Noncriminal moving violations, which include speeding, running red lights and careless driving decreased by 43 percent in Hillsborough County in 2010 when compared to 2007. Drivers arrested for driving under the influence dropped by 18 percent.

According to the 2010 crash statistics report by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, the mileage death rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled decreased by more than 4 percent statewide but the daily average of car accidents in Sunrise, Tamarac, Riviera Beach and throughout Florida essentially remained unchanged, reporting 1 fewer a day when compared to the 2009 daily average.

The Florida Department of Transportation surveyed different locations between 2007 and 2010 to determine if traffic congestion was more or less compared to previous years. The survey indicated that congestion in the bay area decreased by 5 percent in 19 of the 21 locations surveyed.

Florida Highway Patrol reportedly logged the same amount of DUI and traffic patrols in 2010 as they did in 2009. The decline in citations is supported by the suggestion that fines have increased, policy strategies have changed, and driver education programs are improving with stricter graduated driver licensing laws for young drivers. According to the 2010 crash statistics, there were fewer teen crashes in 2010 but the same number of teen drivers killed compared to 2009. No law has been passed as of yet in Florida to eliminate texting, the most dangerous behavior exhibited behind the wheel so how much have policies changed to really make an impact on crashes occurring throughout the state.

Authorities may be optimistic about the future given the fact that crashes were reportedly less for 2010 but Florida remains one of the nation’s deadliest states.

We all hope that the economy improves so that jobs will once again be plentiful and families can get back on their feet. One thing we probably can’t rely on is the price of gas ever plummeting to $2 a gallon again. Is the high price of fuel a saving grace to reducing roadway fatalities? The Congressional Budget Office conducted a study on the impact that gasoline prices have on driving behavior. Researchers found that higher gas prices resulted in freeway motorists driving at lower rates of speed and making less frequent trips, especially in areas where rail or commuter transportation was available for travel.

Motorists driving at lower speeds in order to save money on fuel should have a positive impact on the number of deaths and injuries occurring on roadways.

Florida motorists may reduce the number of trips to the supermarket each week or outings with friends to help cut fuel costs and traffic congestion but nothing keeps motorists more safe than being responsible and attentive behind the wheel.

The car accident attorneys at Freeman, Mallard, Sharp & Gonzalez, LLC are well versed in cases involving drunk drivers, speeders or distracted drivers. If you have been injured in a car accident in Delray Beach, Miami, Greenacres or anywhere in South Florida, call 1-800-561-7777 to make an appointment for a free consultation today.

Additional Resources:
Poor economy leaves fewer bad drivers on Tampa Bay area roads, by Rich Shopes, St. Petersburg Times.

More Blog Entries:
Traffic Accidents Continue to be Leading Killer in Work-Related Accidents in Port St. Lucie and the Rest of the State, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, October 3, 2011.

For Pierce Car Accident Attorneys Examine County Comparison of 2010 Crash Statistics, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, September 26, 2011.

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