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Sarasota Florida Construction Law And Personal Injury Blog

Two dead, several injured in Poinciana collision

A common misconception about the car accidents that occur in Sarasota (and throughout the rest of the U.S.) is that they are almost always the result of one's blatant recklessness or negligence. Yet there is a reason why such incidents are described as "accidents." Few people may ever actually intend to cause a car accident; rather, crashes are typically the result of a mistake or momentary lapse in judgment on the part of a driver. While such mistakes may indeed be unintentional, they still can produce devastating consequences. 

This fact was reaffirmed in a recent accident that occurred near Poinciana. While the exact details (including the cause of the accident are still under investigation), authorities do know that a woman driving along a local road apparently lost control of her vehicle and turned into oncoming traffic, where it collided head-on with an approaching vehicle. The woman and her passengers (her two young brothers and a man whose relationship with her was not reported) all sustained serious injuries and were rushed to local hospitals for treatment. The vehicle they hit was carrying a woman and her granddaughter. Sadly, both of them were killed in the collision. 

What are the advantages of being a defensive driver?

While you can make a commitment to eliminating distractions and keeping your full focus on driving safely, you will always encounter a handful of drivers in Florida whose reckless behavior is both unnerving and dangerous. Your ability to recognize hazardous drivers and maneuver around them safely and respectfully is imperative to your ability to stay safe. 

If you notice someone driving erratically including speeding, tailgating or failing to maintain their lane, you may consider taking note of his or her license plate and then finding a safe place to stop and call 911. You can report the driver and provide his or her license plate number along with details about the location of where you are driving to provide dispatchers with reliable information to find the dangerous driver quickly. 

Driving in the dark increases risk of accidents

As the seasons change, it gets dark earlier in Florida, and this means there are more people on the road during this time. Driving at this time poses increased risks compared to driving during the middle of the day, and people should follow certain tips to stay safe.

According to Popular Mechanics, there are three times the number of fatal accidents during nighttime compared to daytime. Physically, the eyes function differently in the dark, as they are less able to distinguish color, perceive depth or see peripherally. One way to improve sight at night is to dim the lights on the dash and instrument panel. It is also a good idea to check the aim of the headlights, as some point too low or unevenly. A mechanic can help correct the aim to make it easier to see at night.

Did someone handling a remodel in your home do bad work?

Your home is one of your most valuable possessions. Substantial amounts of your income go toward paying for your mortgage, and you have to invest in its maintenance and upkeep. However, you make all of these payments and investments because you know that your home can continue to accrue value over time, meaning that you can sell it for a profit eventually.

Arranging for remodels or upgrades to your home systems, such as the installation of new floors or windows, can drastically increase the overall value of your home as well as your enjoyment of it while you live there. However, the benefit you may receive from investments in updating or maintaining your home will relate directly to the quality of the work performed and the materials the contractors use.

Traffic signal deaths reach a 10-year high

As a Florida motorist, you have undoubtedly noticed that red-light cameras are becoming increasingly visible on many of the state’s roadways, and with good reason – traffic signal deaths are on the rise. Dana J. Watts, Attorney at Law, understands that there is often a direct correlation between distracted driving and traffic signal crashes and fatalities, and we have assisted many people who suffered injuries or lost loved ones in crashes involving traffic signals seek recourse in the aftermath.

According to NBC News, since 2012, the total number of traffic deaths in the United States has increased 10%, but the number of traffic signal-involved road fatalities has skyrocketed nearly 30%. Furthermore, more than 930 people lost their lives in crashes involving other drivers who ran red lights in 2017, and current estimates suggest that two people die on the nation’s roadways every day in incidents involving traffic lights.

What is the Florida 14-day rule?

It is probably a good idea to look up legal issues if you get into a collision on the Florida roads. However, you should also probably seek medical attention as soon as possible following the accident.

Florida has a regulation commonly known as the 14-day rule. Basically, this rule sets a time limit before which you should go seek medical attention. After the limit expires, you may no longer be eligible to claim certain types of insurance benefits. However, you would still want to seek an individual review of your case, even if 14 days had passed.

Risks that could increase your chances of PTSD after an accident

When you are involved in a car accident in Florida, it may not take even a serious impact to create mental stress and anxiety for you. The sheer surprise and inability to prevent what has happened is enough to trigger feelings of despair and fear when you have to get behind the wheel again. At Dana J. Watts, Attorney at Law, we are committed to providing victims of car accidents with the needed support to aid in their recovery. 

Depending on your psychological background and the severity of the accident you were in, you may be more prone to experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder than other people. With timely and consistent intervention, you may be able to overcome the symptoms of your PTSD and once again feel comfortable and confident behind the wheel. You may also find that managing your symptoms requires ongoing professional therapy or assistance to provide support as you work through the emotions resulting from your accident. 

Your advocate during complex construction disputes

At the office of Dana J. Watts, Attorney at Law, we understand that there are many people involved and almost any construction project going on these days in Southwest Florida. Contractors, subcontractors, engineers, construction workers, site managers and architects all have a role to play in improving the infrastructure of our communities.

As you may imagine, this leads to some relatively complex disputes in the industry. To make matters more complicated, there are several different rules that could apply to essential details of construction disputes you pursued in the state.

Falls the leading cause of fatal, nonfatal injury among seniors

For many aging Americans, Florida’s favorable climate, relatively reasonable cost of living and lack of a state income tax make it an ideal place to retire, but as the state’s older population increases, so, too, does the number of falls suffered by this demographic. The team at Dana J. Watts, Attorney at Law, recognizes that falls have become the number-one cause of fatal and nonfatal injury among seniors, and that many of these fall-related injuries and fatalities are preventable.

According to the National Council on Aging, one out of every four Americans who are 65 or older fall at least once a year, with an older adult seeking emergency room care for a fall-related injury every 11 seconds. Falls have become so prevalent among aging populations, in fact, that they now cause about 27,000 deaths and more than 880,000 hospitalizations each year.

Avoid the three kinds of distraction when driving in Florida

Most people understand that distracted driving is quite dangerous. However, too many people assume that the only form of dangerous distraction they need to avoid on the road is the use of a mobile phone. In reality, there are dozens of kinds of distraction, each of which falls into one of three important categories.

When you drive, you need to keep your hands on the wheel, your eyes on your surroundings and your mind on the task at hand. When something distracts you, you can fail to notice important signs of danger and could wind up in an otherwise preventable collision. Familiarizing yourself with the three kinds of distraction can help to remind you to always focus on safety best practices when in control of a motor vehicle.

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