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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Motorcycle riding season is in full swing in South Florida and motorists are reminded to look twice for riders and give them the rights and respect they deserve on the road. motorcycle safety

Our motorcycle injury attorneys have been representing injured riders and their families for half a century. Today, Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, continues our advocacy, both in the courtroom and by promoting motorcycle safety and awareness throughout Southwest Florida.

As Daytona Bike Week concludes, it’s important to remember that it signals the start of high season for motorcycle riding in Florida. While the event draws tens of thousands of riders from across the nation, they arrive in Daytona Beach to enjoy the Florida winter weather, which is why thousands of other riders hit the coastline through the winter and spring riding season.

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Spring break season is upon us and Southwest Florida is expected to be a popular destination despite the ongoing coronavirus restrictions.

In fact, Lee and Collier counties could see more guests than usual, thanks to international travel restrictions related to COVID-19 and guests looking for a “quieter” destination along Florida’s more than 1,000 miles of coastline.

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Seasonal traffic has hit the streets of Southwest Florida in force, despite COVID-19 and the ongoing pandemic restrictions.

Since the holidays, there has been a noticeable increase in traffic and congestion. This alone, is enough to make the streets more dangerous. But when combined with visitors in rental cars, lost tourists, and other motorists who are unfamiliar with the roads, the risks increase exponentially. uninsured accidents

Our Fort Myers car accident attorneys begun the year with a look at the most common dangers on the road, including distracted driving. But perhaps the most under-appreciated risks include many common driving behaviors of which we are all guilty from time to time.

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Our New Year’s look, Staying Safe on Florida Roads, has examined many of the ways drivers are distracted inside the vehicle, including cell phones and other electronic devices, eating and drinking, and engaging with passengers.

But an often overlooked contributing factor in collision causation is distractions and obstructions outside the vehicle. These can range from road construction, to previous collisions, to the actions of other motorists, to special events, and people carrying sign boards and intersection advertising. roadconstruction-300x225

Our car accident attorneys in Fort Myers and Cape Coral know such distraction is a contributing factor in a substantial number of serious and fatal traffic collisions each year. In some cases, such distractions may be reported by initial investigators, but in many other cases, these contributing causes go unreported.

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As part of our New Year’s look, Staying Safe on Florida Roads,we’ve taken a look at many types of distracted driving, including cell phones and other electronic devices.

But when it comes to driver distraction, the most overlooked risk is sitting beside you.

By some estimates, driver distraction is involved in at least one-third of the nation’s fatal traffic collisions, resulting in more than 10,000 deaths each year. Even in cases where speeding, alcohol, or other factors contributed, it is often momentary distraction that provides the catalyst for a tragedy. car accident

On some level, all drivers with passengers – whether friends, family or passengers for hire – understand they are accepting the added responsibility for everyone’s safety. However, far few consider the risk those passengers pose to safety when it comes to distraction.

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We’ve been blogging a lot about distracted driving as part of our New Year’s look: Staying Safe on Florida Roads. 

While we all know about the risks of using cell phones, less publicized risks like having children or pets in the vehicle, eating and drinking, and using onboard electronics, are no less dangerous. car accident attorney

Still, our experienced car accident attorneys in Fort Myers know few risks compare to the modern-day cell phone. Gone are the days when the biggest worry was driving and talking. Text messaging began a larger threat because it requires a driver to engage in all three types of distraction – eyes off the road, mind off the task of driving, hand off the wheel.

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