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A series of high-profile drunk driving collisions has authorities concerned as we head into the heart of the holiday season.

This week, First Coast News reported the Florida Highway Patrol arrested a 46-year-old woman accused of causing a collision that killed a Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office employee. The victim was driving with her husband and two children when the defendant’s vehicle reportedly struck the family’s car, causing it to rollover.

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In South Florida, CBS4 Miami reports a Coral Springs firefighter is facing a DUI manslaughter charge, after allegedly driving into a group of motorcyclists on the Florida Turnpike after attending a St. Patrick’s Day parade. Closer to home, a Lee County man was arrested and accused of drunk driving Thanksgiving weekend after a crash at Summerlin Road and Pine Ridge Road. He told officers he thought he was in an Uber on the way to jail.

Our Fort Myers injury lawyers support Mothers Against Drunk Driving and other education and prevention efforts to keep intoxicated motorists off our roads. In addition to alcohol intoxication, driving under the influence of drugs has increasingly become a concern.

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When it comes to auto insurance, Florida and Maine tell a tale of rags and riches.

Florida has more uninsured motorists on the road than any state in the nation and ranks dead last in the nation when it comes to required auto insurance. Maine has a spot near the front of the pack in both categories. The New Year is often a time when we make commitments,  drop or extend insurance coverages, and make other changes to the paperwork of our lives. car accident

Our car accident attorneys in Fort Myers and Naples know unless you’ve taken specific steps to assure you are protected, it’s very likely the auto insurance premiums you pay each month could be for a policy that is worthless in the event you are involved in a serious or fatal traffic collision. We’ve been reporting a lot recently about the dangers of holiday traffic and the increased risk of motor-vehicle collisions as we head into tourist season. While we hope you read the road advice and heed the safe-driving warnings, updating your auto insurance policy is vital to protecting you and your family in the event of a collision.

Uninsured Motorist Collisions in SWFL

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Cape Coral drivers would do well to avoid Santa Barbara Boulevard and Cape Coral Parkway. Both the intersection and the roads themselves.

As part of an ongoing series on Cape Coral traffic, The News-Press looked at the city’s most dangerous traffic hotspots. Heavy traffic was the common denominator. Each of the six most dangerous intersections handled between intersection11-300x22540,000 and 100,000 cars per day in 2017.

Recently we wrote about the dangers of intersection accidents in Southwest Florida. While it’s true intersections are always dangerous, Southwest Florida’s relentless growth is making the dangers even more acute as roads and traffic infrastructure struggle to keep up with the demands.

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Long-awaited pedestrian safety improvements are coming to downtown Fort Myers. But residents will first have to weather a storm of construction headaches.

Wink News reports the Florida Department of Transportation held a public meeting about the downtown Fort Myers construction project. The Cleveland Avenue Pedestrian Safety Project will run from Winkler Avenue to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. In addition to road resurfacing and remarking, FDOT plans to construct a raised median and five mid-block crossings with overhead mounted pedestrian signals. These signals are called High-Intensity Activated crosswalk beacons, or pedestrian hybrid beacons.pedestriansafety-225x300

Florida is the most dangerous state in the nation for pedestrians and Southwest Florida has been cited as being particularly deadly. Much of the risk can be attributed to poor design and lack of adequate infrastructure planning during the area’s early boom years. Home to just 27,000 residents in 1970, For Myers has tripled in size. Two years ago, Smart Growth America’s report “Dangerous by Design,” identified the Cape Coral-Fort Myers area as the nation’s most dangerous for pedestrians.

The same report identified Florida cities as the seven-deadliest in the nation.

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No discussion of road risks would be complete as we head into the holiday and winter tourist season without talking about teen drivers.

Traffic deaths are the leading cause of accidental death among teens. Your child is more likely to be killed in a traffic accident than by any other means. Each year, 2,500 teenagers are killed and about 300,000 are treated in hospital emergency rooms following a motor-vehicle collision, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. carforsale-300x225

The start of the school year and the start of the new year are the most popular times for teenagers to get their driver’s license and hit the road.

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City drivers are being reminded of the return in seasonal traffic after a spate of serious intersection collisions in Lee County.

NBC2 reported a 7-car accident in Fort Myers shut down U.S. 4/Cleveland Avenue near Hanson Street. One vehicle ended up on its side. Four people were taken to the hospital with serious injuries. A Lehigh Acres intersection collision killed a 30-year-old man who was westbound on SR 82 when authorities say a 43-year-old woman pulled out in front of him in a minivan. streetsigns-300x200

Holiday traffic will merge with winter tourist season in Southwest Florida. Put succinctly: Current traffic conditions are as good as they are going to get for the next six months.

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The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has released the first major study on the effectiveness of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS).

While a decade ago, we began seeing the first fully functional touch-screen entertainment and navigation systems in new vehicles, the last five years have witnessed an increasing number of driver assistance devices, such as backup cameras, parallel parking systems, and crash-avoidance technology.night-highway-1450204-300x184

“As these technologies become more available to motorists, they have the potential to reduce rates of crashes, injuries and deaths on our roadways,” the Foundation states in releasing the report. “However, that potential will not be realized fully unless consumers accept these technologies, understand how to use them, use them as intended, and avoid misusing or becoming overreliant on them.”

That’s a tall order.

Such technology has played a role in an increasing number of injury and wrongful death claims. And, with driverless vehicles just over the horizon, such claims are likely to be further complicated by advancing technology for decades to come. Some future cases will undoubtedly involve defective-product litigation. However, in many cases it will be up to your injury lawyer to prove an at-fault driver used safety technology inappropriately, or relied upon it to an unreasonable degree.

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We’ve written recently about some of the increased injury risks that come with the year-end holidays.

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Among the most overlooked are holiday shopping risks and the dangers of defective products. The holidays are a time of large crowds, overstocked stores and overflowing parking lots. We also bring more new products into the home during the holidays than at any other time of the year.

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The 46th Annual Fort Myers Boat Show will take place next weekend on the downtown waterfront.

Organizers expect the biggest event ever, with nearly 500 boats of all types. More than 100 boat brands will be represented and hundreds of booths will be selling gear and other accessories. Go Boating Florida reports Southwest Florida Marine Industries Association has made a substantial investment in floating docks and other equipment to accommodate boaters visiting the City Yacht Basin.boats-300x225

Boat show hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15, through Saturday, Nov. 17; and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 18. For more information, visit Go Boating Florida.

The event serves as a timely reminder that winter boating season in Southwest Florida is officially underway. The most recent statistics suggest Lee County is the most dangerous in the state when it comes to deadly boating accidents, according to The News-Press. 

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Safety is too often a critically neglected holiday skill.

Everyone at Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, wish all of you a safe and enjoyable holiday season. We don’t want to be the dark storm cloud blocking your ray of sunshine. But the fact is the holidays are an incredibly hectic, chaotic and dangerous time. Taking a moment with your family to talk about the risks can go a long way toward keeping you safe.christmas-300x225

Start of the winter tourism season in Southwest Florida will coincide with the return of holiday crowds. We have written recently about the increasing risk of motorcycle accidents as the riding season gets underway and the impact of early darkness road risks. 

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