West Palm Beach Golf Cart Accident Attorney
Florida is known for its senior communities, which have many conveniences for retired adults. One common convenience is the ability to use golf carts for transportation within the community and many places even have roadways solely designated for golf cart use. Because of their ease of operation and relatively low speed, golf carts are often considered to be safer than traditional cars. However, as with any motor vehicle, golf carts present the risk of accidents and injuries. Whether you are using a golf cart in a senior community or on a golf course, you may be entitled to compensation if you are involved in a collision and you should discuss your situation with a West Palm Beach golf cart accident attorney today.
Golf Cart Injuries Can Be Severe
Golf carts do not have the same standard safety features as cars or trucks, including seat belts and air bags. Additionally, because of the open nature of golf carts, it is easy for individuals to fall out of the cart if a collision occurs. For these reasons and more, victims of golf cart accidents often sustain serious injuries, including the following:
- Traumatic brain injuries;
- Broken bones;
- Neck and back injuries;
- Spinal cord injuries;
- Soft tissues injuries; and
- Contusions and lacerations.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
A Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is quite possibly the most serious type of injury a person can sustain, depending on the severity of the trauma. Because the brain is so fragile, brain cells do not grow back (for the most part), the consequences can be long-lasting, or lifelong in some cases. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 138 people a day die from TBI-complicated injuries.
The severity and lasting complications of a broken bone vary with the specific bone injured, the age of the victim, and how badly or in how many places the bone was broken. Another major complication includes other injuries in conjunction with the broken bone. For instance, an ACL tear by itself is a huge medical setback, but if a fractured femur is added to the list of injuries, both may take even longer to heal and the pain and suffering that the patient has to go through may be doubled. The more injuries a victim has, the longer they take to heal and the more decrepit their state of physical fitness will be when the injuries finally do heal.
Neck and Back Injuries
A golf cart crash may result in whiplash that lingers for weeks, months, or years. Similarly, chronic back pain can develop from a severe jolt in a golf cart accident. Sometimes there are no medical or surgical options to fix chronic neck or back pain, and the pain may last even when the initial injury to the soft tissue dissipates.
Spinal Cord Injuries
While the brain is the most important and delicate part of the human body, the spinal cord is the second. The messages your brain sends to your limbs is delivered through the spinal cord, which is a bundle of cords that runs down the back through the spinal column, and any damage to the spinal cord can result in partial or complete paralysis, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. There are two types of spinal cord injuries: complete and incomplete. If the damage to the spinal cord is incomplete, the area below the damage will only have partial paralysis, and may actually be able to regain some function after the injury. However, if the golf cart accident was, for example, a rollover and the spinal cord was severed completely, no function will exist in the body below that point of severation. Spinal cord injuries can be some of the most costly, and receiving compensation to help with the medical bills can make an enormous difference to a family in its time of need.
Soft Tissue Injuries
The soft tissue is comprised of skin, muscle, organs, cartilage, tendon, and everything else that is not made of bone. As such, a soft tissue injury can include back injuries, torn tendons, internal organ damage, whiplash, and other injuries caused to the body, other than broken bones. Soft tissue injuries can heal quicker than broken bones due to the large supply of blood that they receive compared to bone, but the lingering pain and other complications can result in only partial recovery for the patient.
Contusions and Lacerations
Severe bruising is called a contusion in the medical world, and a laceration is simply a cut. Contusions can result in a long-lasting limp and inability to perform normal tasks around the house or at work, while a laceration can be a life-threatening injury, and a lifelong scar afterwards. Both deserve considerable compensation if you were not to blame.
These injuries can require extensive and costly treatment including hospitalization, surgery, and physical therapy. Because many victims of golf cart accidents are older adults, recovery from the above serious injuries may be significantly more difficult. Older adults may face additional complications and may require additional treatment following an injury. Some older adults who sustain serious injuries may have to reside in an assisted-living facility and may suffer permanent disabilities.
Negligence Often Causes Golf Cart Accidents
Golf cart accidents may be the fault of the driver of the golf cart or of a third party. Some examples of acts of negligence that can lead to golf carts accidents include:
- Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs;
- Distracted driving;
- Unqualified, unlicensed, or untrained drivers;
- Driving on roadways prohibited by Florida law;
- Speeding or taking turns too fast;
- Driving off-road on dangerous terrain;
- Other drivers who cause collisions;
- Defective brakes, tires, or other parts of the cart; and
- Road hazards.
A qualified golf cart accident attorney can help you identify any negligent parties and can represent you in a legal claim to seek recovery for your losses.
Contact An Experienced West Palm Beach Golf Cart Accident Attorney Today
Golf carts accidents can cause severe injuries and, at the law firm of Pike & Lustig, LLP in West Palm Beach, Florida, we take this type of case very seriously. Anyone who has sustained injuries and losses due to a golf cart accident should consult with an experienced member of our firm as soon as possible so that we can evaluate your case and advise you of your legal rights. If you are entitled to compensation, we will serve as zealous advocates so that you receive the compensation you deserve from any negligent parties. We offer free consultations and never collect a fee unless you are able to recover, so please call our office today at 561-291-8298 for help.