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Fighting for Florida victims' rights in truck accidents

In many truck accidents fatalities occur because of the trucks' massive size and cargo. Those who survive truck accidents can still suffer serious injuries, and some are left permanently disabled. Besides the physical injuries, victims can also suffer from emotional and financial injuries as well. Our Gainesville law firm can fight for the rights of victims as they seek justice and appropriate compensation for their damages.

Truck driver errors can often be the cause of accidents. Driving a truck requires considerable skill, so drivers should remain alert, attentive and extra cautious at all times. When they fail to do so and cause injuries to others, our lawyers, who are Civil Trial Law Board certified specialists, can guide victims with all of their legal needs.

Drowsy driving suggests major factor in car accidents

When it comes to driving, impaired is impaired, whether that means driving under the influence of alcohol or driving while drowsy. Many Florida residents, like many other Americans, have driven while nearly asleep-and even fallen asleep. However, concern is growing nationwide that drowsy driving is an underreported and underappreciated problem, one that is severe enough to be responsible for many car accidents.

A survey recently released by the National Sleep Association showed that almost 30 percent of U.S. drivers admitted to dozing off while driving. The figures may seem small when compared to drunken driving and other forms of distracted driving, but data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows some 100,000 crashes are caused by drowsy driving in the United States every year. The results include 71,000 injuries and more than 1,500 deaths and a mind-boggling $12.5 billion in economic losses. In Florida, more than 2,800 drowsy driving-related auto accidents were reported in 2011. The accidents left 21 people dead and nearly 2,400 people injured.

Fatal bike accidents on the rise in Florida and 5 other states

Over the last decade, bicycling has grown in popularity because of the numerous health benefits it offers riders. Beyond that, bicycling is also economical, and it cuts carbon emissions and traffic congestion. However, as the number of bicyclists has surged, so have bike accidents, including here in Florida.

According to statistics recently released by the national Governor's Highway Safety Association, fatalities from bicycle accidents increased by 16 percent from 2010 to 2012. The 2011 statistic of 680 deaths rose to 722 in 2012. More than half of all fatalities occurred in just six states -- Michigan, New York, Texas, Illinois, California and Florida. California and Florida not only had the largest numbers of bicycle accident fatalities but also the highest increase in total fatalities.

Is distracted driving a factor in truck accidents?

Before the invention of smartphones, drunk driving was one of the main causes of car and truck accidents. Although drunk driving is always a concern, distracted driving has become one of the recent primary reasons for accidents. Florida drivers realize how dangerous distracted driving is, especially when they are behind the wheel of a commercial vehicle. Serious injuries and deaths are common when it comes to truck accidents.

What are the distracted driving statistics concerning commercial vehicles and trucks? In the latest study of the SmartDrive Distracted Driving Index, five percent of distracted truck drivers were distracted 79 percent of the time when they were executing risky maneuvers. The research defined "risky maneuvers" as situations such as swerves, sudden stops and collisions. The data, conducted in 2012, was derived from vehicles equipped with video recorders. Over 15 million video events were analyzed during the course of the study.

OSHA cites Florida contractor as fall hazard campaign heats up

Falls are the leading cause of fatalities in the workplace and the numbers continue to grow. Since construction work usually involves working at great heights, the trend is definitely alarming. To help curb fall hazards, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration launched a program that emphasizes the need for better fall protection. The campaign seems to have gathered steam, especially after the agency recently cited a Florida contractor for failing to look after the safety of its workers.

The Jacksonville contractor faced OSHA violations after an agency investigation showed that construction workers in three work areas went about their work without a fall protection system. The workers performed residential construction. Three citations were handed out. One was for allowing workers to use a stepladder's top step, prohibited by OSHA, and two were for violations of fall protection regulations. The contractor was fined more than $188,000 for the violations.

What are the signs that a drunk driver is on a Florida road?

Drunk driving is always a concern in Florida and across the entire United States. Every year, drunk driving accidents result in serious injuries and fatality to motorists. However, drunk driving is very preventable, not just on the part of the drunk driver but on the part of the motorist as well. Here are a few drunk driving-related tips for Florida motorists.

How can motorists spot possible drunk drivers? There are typical signs that the person behind the wheel is a drunk driver. One sign is that the vehicle is having trouble staying in the lane or the vehicle is constantly swerving or weaving. The second sign is when a driver is having trouble following the speed limit or brakes too early. Three, when the driver does not follow or has a delayed reaction to traffic regulations. Strange behavior and poor judgment are also signs of driver intoxication.

Taking the weight off the shoulders of bike accident victims

When it is bike versus car, the bicyclist always ends up holding the shorter end of the stick. Bike accident victims often sustain serious injuries, such as broken bones, head trauma and spinal injury. They are even prone to suffering fatal injuries. Unfortunately, it does not end there. Injured bicyclists and their families have to shoulder the medical costs, lost wages and other miscellaneous expenses. While they may want to file a legal action, it may be too much to handle considering the challenge of their present situation. Here is where our experienced Gainesville, Florida, law firm can shoulder some of the weight of an accident's burden.

Our law firm has more than 60 years of experience representing clients who have suffered bicycle accident injuries. We know how difficult it is for victims and their families to make sense of their situation and deal with a lawsuit at the same time. So, we take the weight off their shoulders by aggressively and efficiently representing them in court. We make every effort to ensure that they receive sufficient compensation, not just for the injury itself but for any inconvenience that stemmed from being injured.

Important facts and figures about truck accidents

Trucks are constant fixtures on the streets and highways of Florida. These massive vehicles are responsible for carrying essential goods in and out of the state. As useful as trucks are, when they are involved in an accident, the results can be catastrophic. Therefore, it is advantageous for truck drivers, truck owners and motorists to know about some relevant truck accident statistics and information.

A lot of people think that truck accidents happen on a regular basis. However, according to the 2012 statistics of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, large trucks and other motor vehicles were both involved in an average of 1.3 fatal accidents based on 100 million miles that were traveled. The difference is that because of the truck's large size and equally large amount of cargo, truck accidents create more extensive damage. People involved in truck accidents are also more prone to serious injuries and death.

What penalties will drunk drivers face in Florida?

Florida has one of the harshest drunk driving laws in the United States. Many Florida residents find this appropriate since drunk driving accidents often result in serious injuries and fatalities to unsuspecting motorists. The state shares these sentiments. So what are the penalties drunk drivers may face in Florida?

The Sunshine State makes many penalties of convicted first time offenders in other states seem like a slap on the wrist. In Florida, a convicted first time drunk-driving offender will pay a fine between $500 and $1,000. However, if the driver's blood alcohol content is 0.15 percent or higher, the possible monetary penalty will double. Mandatory community service will also be required by the convicted drunk driver. The driver will be in probationary status for up to a year. The driver's license will be revoked for a year as well. The driver will render prison time for up to six months. If the driver's BAC is 0.15 percent or more, the jail sentence could last up to 9 months.

Wrong-way car accident ends in fatality, serious injuries

For many Florida motorists, getting out on the open road can be a cathartic and freeing experience. However, enjoyment can transform into a tragedy which can permanently alter lives. Even more unfortunately is that fact that some car wrecks are, no matter how closely one follows the rules of the roads, out of our control because of the decisions of others. Such seems to be the case with a recent accident near Gainesville.

A man is dead and a woman seriously injured after a wrong-way car collision. The man and the woman passenger were traveling eastbound on State Road 20 when a car traveling westbound collided with the two. An investigation of the accident is ongoing and details have yet to be released on the driver of the westbound vehicle.

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Avera & Smith
2814 SW 13th Street
Gainesville FL 32608

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