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Florida Driving: Unexpected Effects of COVID-19

If there’s one thing Floridians can agree on, it’s that driving in the state is often a chore. You might assume that roadways would be overall safer in 2020, given that miles driven were down 13%. Shockingly, the opposite is true. 2020 was a record-setting year for Florida driving. With a little research and preparation, we can change that for the year of 2021.

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Shocking 2020 Florida Driving Statistics

For so many reasons, 2020 was a particularly negative year for most. One thing that stands out was the surge in motor vehicle accidents per capita throughout the year. It’s so shocking since there was much less driving due to the Coronavirus pandemic. According to counts reported by the National Safety Council, in Florida, in 2020, there were an estimated:

  • $474.4 billion in all damages related to motor-vehicle accidents
  • 42,060 motor-vehicle deaths (an 8% increase compared to 2019)
  • 2,830 billion miles driven (a 13% decrease compared to 2019)
  • 4,795,000 medically consulted injuries related to motor-vehicle accidents
  • And a one-year roadway death rate that tops records all the way back until 1924 – 96 years

How to Make Florida Driving Safer for Everyone

It’s plain to see that Florida roadways actually got worse, despite the considerable reduction in travel throughout 2020. The issues, then, aren’t necessarily related to the volume of traffic and congested roads, but instead unsafe driving practices. In order to remedy the situation moving forward, safe driving habits must be practiced. Safe driving practices may look like the following:

  • Respecting the elements

    In Florida, we know the weather is constantly changing—we get rain, fog, and sunshine all in one day. Nearly 22% of all motor vehicle accidents are caused by inclement weather. When it begins to rain or gets foggy or dark, practice safe driving habits.

  • Driving sober

    Not only is it a federal law to stay sober behind the wheel, it’s also a practical, safe-driving habit. The CDC has quite a selection of shocking statistics that illustrate the effects of driving under the influence. In short, it’s just not worth it—drive sober or not at all.

  • Driving without distractions

    There are a great number of possible distractions that have the potential to impair a person’s driving. Most notable is the cell phone. The NHTSA states that “taking your eyes off the road for 5 seconds while driving 55 miles-per-hour is the same thing as driving the length of a football field with your eyes closed.” The texts can wait. If it’s absolutely necessary to attend to your cell phone or other distractions while behind the wheel, pull over.

  • Obey posted speed signage

    Speeding was a contributing factor in 26% of all car accidents in a recent year. You know speeding can be very costly if you get pulled over and stuck with a ticket. But although speeding may seem like a victimless crime, it poses a threat to you and others on the roadway. At the end of the day, it’s much better to arrive late than to not arrive at all.

Keeping the Roads Safe

These rules, and other simple, common-sense practices, can make a world of difference for all drivers. It’s important to remember that, even though it’s a regular activity, driving will always be very dangerous. If we want to establish better, safer roadways in Florida, let’s all work together to practice safe driving habits!

Contact a Florida Car Accident Attorney

Sometimes an accident is unavoidable. If you’ve been injured in a car accident, contact Brooks Law Group for a free consultation. Don’t wait to start your claim, call us today at 1-800-LAW-3030.

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