Articles Posted in Personal Injury

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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chrsitmassafety-300x225Our injury lawyers in Fort Myers and Cape Coral wish each of you a wonderful Thanksgiving and a joyous start to the year-end holidays.

We recently wrote about parking lot injury risks as holiday shoppers return to local malls and box stores. But the reality is the holiday travel season is full of year-end risks that can often be mitigated with planning, some forethought, and a focus on safety.

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More than six months into the coronavirus pandemic, the impact of COVID-19 on road safety is still being studied. Certainly there was a marked drop in traffic collisions through the spring and early summer, as lockdown orders shuttered bars, restaurants and all but essential businesses and most of Southwest Florida sheltered in place. ambulance-300x201

But with Gov. Ron DeSantis lifting remaining restrictions at the start of October, and the height of tourism season right around the corner, there is growing evidence that the roads of Lee, Collier and Charlotte counties are once again getting more dangerous.

And perhaps in new ways.

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Lawmakers from Tallahassee to Washington are taking up the issue of COVID liability, in large part to protect schools and businesses while limiting the rights of victims to recover amid the worldwide pandemic.

Gov. Ron DeSantis has been largely mute on the subject of COVID liability. Channel 4 News in Jacksonville reports DeSantis was not among the 21 Republican governors who signed a letter to Congress asking for COVID liability protections for schools, businesses and healthcare workers.

COVID School Liability

New fireworks laws, combined with COVID restrictions, are expected to increase the risks of fireworks injuries in Southwest Florida as we head into the Fourth of July weekend.

Florida Senate Bill 140 was among the 100 new laws that hit the books on July 1, according to the Miami Herald. The bill permits private citizens to set off fireworks in Florida on July 4, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.fireworks

The Palm Beach Posts reports record fireworks sales as many municipalities cancel or curtail fireworks celebrations in response to the COVID pandemic. Channel 10 News in Tampa reports authorities are bracing for an increasing number of injuries.

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While the COVID pandemic has had a calming effect on Southwest Florida traffic, relaxing restrictions combined with summer rains will serve to increase the risks of the road.

The Fort Myers News-Press reported a death this week after the driver of a Corvette lost control in the rain and slammed into a truck.  Police said the 53-year-old Cape Coral man lost control of his Corvette on State Road 82 near Lightard Knott Lane about 7:10 p.m. The vehicle went over the median, west of Buckingham Road, into eastbound traffic, where it hit a Ford F-350 King Cab.uninsured accidents

Our experienced Fort Myers injury attorneys urge motorists to take the risks of driving in the rain seriously as we head into the height of storm season.

The news coming out of the nursing home industry is not good.

At this point, our nursing home injury lawyers in Fort Myers and Cape Coral suspect the risks are well known when it comes to COVID infections in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Elderly populations and those with pre-existing conditions already face the highest risk of adverse outcomes.nursing homes

But to understand the full scope of the risk, and place blame where it belongs, it is important to separate the universal COVID risks faced by the elderly, from the unnecessary risks faced by residents as a result of negligence and ineptness.

Our injury lawyers in Fort Myers and Cape Coral have fielded a number of questions from concerned citizens about the COVID-19 outbreak. ambulance-300x201

At Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, we stand in support of the many brave men and women working in our hospitals, as well as our first responders. We are taking care of our clients, our employees and our families and are doing whatever we can during these unprecedented times.

But the impact of the outbreak goes far beyond those occupations we have generally considered to be high risk. From dental hygienists to school teachers and grocery store employees — the portion of the workforce with legitimate health and safety concerns have increased exponentially since the worldwide pandemic began less than a month ago.

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Spring training and spring break are upon us as Southwest Florida enters the height of the winter tourist season.

Traffic is reaching its annual peak in Lee and Collier counties, as the Minnesota Twins and the Boston Red Sox bring thousands of visitors to the area. On the beaches, spring break and visitors escaping frigid northern temperatures mean hotels, resorts, bars and restaurants are managing burgeoning workloads and reaping profits that will sustain them through the slower summer months.

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While visitors can be injured at any time of the year, our experienced injury lawyers in Fort Myers know March is statistically the most dangerous month. Everyone faces an increased risk of car accidents this time of year. However, vulnerable road users, including bicyclists, pedestrians and motorcycle riders, are at even higher risk. Visitors are not only more likely to be bicyclists or pedestrians, but are traversing unfamiliar areas often crowded with vehicle traffic and lacking the adequate sidewalks, bike lanes and signs and signals that could help reduce the risk.

 

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