The White House has proclaimed May to be Older Americans Month.

As we emerge from pandemic restrictions, we at Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, encourage you to take some time to check on an older adult friend or loved one. There can be a tendency to think older adults are used to the isolation but that is often not the case. We are all dealing with the impact of COVID-19.

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The fact is older adults are among our most vulnerable citizens for a host of reasons, from fall injuries to nursing home neglect and abuse, to financial exploitation. Retirement communities, in particular, may be home to many senior residents with few (if any) family members in the area. Our seniors deserve to live out their days in peace and dignity. Whatever your role in the community, your interaction with an elderly resident may be their only human interaction of the day, or week.

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Several high-profile motorcycle crashes this week are a stark reminder of the risks riders face as we head into the summer riding season.

A Cape Coral restaurant owner was killed when his motorcycle was struck by a motor vehicle at an intersection in Cape Coral. Another rider was seriously injured in a crash on Airport-Pullings Road in Naples, according to the Daily News. motorcycle accident

Our veteran motorcycle injury attorneys have spent decades fighting for the rights of riders and their families, as well as promoting safe riding throughout the community. We urge all motorists to use caution around riders, and to understand that their lives are truly in your hands.

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Safety advocates are warning motorists of the dangers of intersection traffic collisions.

Our car accident attorneys in Cape Coral and Fort Myers opened the year with our Safe Driving series, which looked at the heightened risks of a collision at intersections. These natural points of traffic conflict are especially dangerous for walkers and cyclists. But motorists also have a high risk of colliding with another motor vehicle. car accident lawyer

WINK News is among the organizations reporting the rise in traffic collisions since the start of the pandemic. As we reported here on our injury blog, more than 100 traffic deaths were reported in 2020 despite the drastic reduction in traffic congestion that resulted from pandemic restrictions. In September, as season opened, there were close to 1,000 crashes in Lee County.

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Graduation season is upon us. Congratulations to each of the high school and college graduates in Southwest Florida.

Our injury lawyers in Fort Myers and Cape Coral know this is a joyous season full of pride, recognition and personal growth. But it is also a time of needless heartache and tragedy for families forced each year to deal with the serious or fatal injury of a loved one so full of life and promise. woman

The inherent risks of the season usually involve either graduation celebrations or road accidents involving teenagers. However, there is much parents and teens can do to help reduce the risks of being involved in a life-altering “accident.”

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It’s official. COVID has not made the streets of Southwest Florida any safer.

The News-Press reported there were more than 100 traffic fatalities last year in Lee County, despite the drastic traffic reductions that resulted from COVID restrictions through high season and the summer months.

It was the 10th time since 2000 that Lee County recorded more than 100 traffic deaths in a year, but the first time since 2017. So, statistically, road risks actually increased during the pandemic, despite the travel restrictions and business closures. car accident

As our injury lawyers in Fort Myers have pointed out here on our blog, vulnerable road users continue to be at highest risk and are overrepresented in the statistics. There were 22 Lee County pedestrians killed in crashes in 2020, 18 motorcyclists and eight bicyclists. That accounts for nearly half of the total number of fatalities. All totaled, there were 107 Lee County drivers killed in 94 fatal crashes in 2020.

Eleven of the 98 fatal crashes were hit-and-runs and a high number of fatal crashes were blamed on speeding.

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The defining symbol of the $2 trillion infrastructure package proposed by President Joe Biden might be a traffic cone.

One thing is certain as we emerge from the pandemic, travel and road construction are certain to mix like oil and water for the foreseeable future.

Southwest Florida has seen explosive growth for decades. As our founder Bruce L. Scheiner celebrates his 50th year of fighting for the rights of injury victims, we have noted many of the growth milestones that have occurred locally during that half century, from the construction of I-75 and Southwest Florida International Airport to the establishment of several of the area’s universities. A population of just over 100,000 in the 1970s, has grown to nearly 800,000 residents.

But as we emerge from the pandemic, there is every sign that the growth is accelerating. The USA Today reports the plan includes $300 billion for roads, bridges, highways and electric vehicle infrastructure.roadconstruction-300x225

While we have long grown accustomed to summer road construction, and infrastructure projects being completed between tourist seasons, the massive $2 trillion in spending Biden is proposing, combined with the $1,9 trillion economic relief package that included billions for schools and local government projects, we are likely to see a construction boom the likes of which not even Southwest Florida has witnessed.

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Pedestrians were already at high risk before the pandemic. Particularly in Southwest Florida, which has consistently ranked among the nation’s deadliest locations for pedestrians. A lack of infrastructure like streetlights and sidewalks, urban sprawl, a significant transient population, and explosive growth have all been factors that have contributed to the risks.

But now there is evidence that the coronavirus pandemic has made walking even more dangerous. pedestriansafety-1-225x300

The Governor’s Highway Safety Association reports the number of fatal pedestrian accidents increased in 27 states, despite reductions in overall traffic as a result of pandemic restrictions.

Nearly 3,000 pedestrians were killed, an increase of 20 percent, despite a 16.5 percent decrease in traffic.

“Walking should not be a life and death undertaking, yet many factors have combined to put pedestrians at historical levels of risk,” Jonathan Adkins, the group’s executive director, said in a news release. Florida was among 7 states that accounted for more than half of all traffic deaths. The others were Arizona, California, Georgia, New York, North Carolina and Texas.

The number of pedestrian deaths is on the rise nationwide. Walkers now account for 1 in 6 traffic deaths, up from about 1 in 8 in 2010.

Alcohol is often a contributing factor, with more than half of all fatal collisions involving an intoxicated driver or walker.

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Graduation season is upon us, followed by summer. Hopefully, we are putting the worst of the coronavirus pandemic behind us, and millions of Americans are itching to travel. Among those at highest risk are teenagers and young drivers. hotvehicles1-300x224

We continue our safe-driving series by reminding Southwest Florida parents about talking to their kids about the risks and ensuring your teen is properly insured and is driving a suitable vehicle.

Much has been made about the extra risks teens face: Driver inexperience, uncertainty in unusual conditions like rain or heavy traffic, riding with other teen passengers, distraction, driving at night, and driving while intoxicated.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports teenagers drive less than all but the elderly, yet are three times more likely to be involved in fatal crashes than drivers over the age of 20. Those ages 16 and 17 are at highest risk.

But the truth is many risks are preventable.

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COVID-19 may be at least partially responsible for reducing drunk driving deaths in Florida by one-third.

In 2020, there were 746 fatalities from crashes involving alcohol, drugs, or a combination of both in Florida – a decrease of more than 33% from 2019. bar1-300x225

However, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles is not letting up on efforts to further reduce the risks of these senseless tragedies, which continue to be the cause of about one-third of fatal injuries on the road. This month, law enforcement across Florida are launching the “Never Drive Impaired” campaign in partnership with state agencies and safety organizations across Florida to remind motorists that there is never an excuse to drive impaired.

With the time change, comes later light. While this is a welcome change for many, including tourist destinations, restaurants and other local businesses trying to recover from COVID-19 restrictions, it also makes for dark mornings, especially over the next month as Southwest Florida days lengthen toward summer.

Numerous studies have been done on many aspects of Dayintersection1-300x225light Savings Time, with mixed results. Until the 1800s, cities set their clocks by the sun. While this could result in minor differences, it worked for everyone until the trains needed to run on time. By the start of the 1900s, time zones had been established but it was not until World War 1 that Daylight Savings Time became standard in the United States.

Moving the clocks ahead an hour in the spring and back in the fall was believed to save energy consumption by providing more evening light. Several studies have found that is not the case, largely because people remain active later into the evening, visiting shops, restaurants and other destination locations.

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