Wrong-Way Driving Auto Accidents in Florida: Dangers, Causes, and Fault
Wrong-way driving, or the act of driving a vehicle against the direction of traffic, causes more than 350 fatalities each year. Wrong-way driving is a common cause of auto accidents in Florida and can result in catastrophic injuries and deaths.
Driving in the wrong direction poses a significant threat to Floridians. In fact, according to researchers, Florida ranked third in the average frequency of wrong-way driving collisions, just after Texas and California.
Of all the vehicle crashes that can occur on our roadways, wrong-way accidents are some of the most devastating ones because they often happen at high speeds and result in frontal-impact collisions.
In almost all wrong-way driving cases, the driver of the vehicle that traveled against the direction of traffic is held at fault for causing the collision. However, you may still need the help of a West Palm Beach car crash attorney to determine liability in your case.
Wrong-Way Driving Auto Accident in Florida
Last month, an SUV traveling in the wrong direction caused a four-vehicle crash on Interstate 95. According to the Miami Herald, a gray KIA Rio that was heading south in a northbound lane collided with three other cars near Dania Beach just after 2 a.m.
The other vehicles involved were identified as Toyota Yaris, Honda Civic, and KIA Forte. The driver of the Rio died at the scene, while four people in the Yaris and Forte suffered minor injuries.
The Dangers of Wrong-Way Driving
Driving in the wrong direction occurs when a motorist fails to observe posted traffic signs or pavement markings and, as a result, ends up traveling against the direction of traffic.
Head-on collisions account for more than 80% of wrong-way driving fatalities. Also, wrong-way driving crashes are associated with serious injuries such as loss of a limb, paralysis, traumatic brain injuries, back injuries, fractured bones, and others.
Causes of Wrong-Way Driving Crashes
The most common reasons why drivers travel against the flow of traffic are:
- Inadequate or missing road signs or markings. Government entities must install and maintain traffic signs and pavement markings that are adequately visible to motorists to keep people safe. Failure to place traffic signs to prevent wrong-way driving crashes or failure to eliminate obstruction can result in the government entity’s liability.
- Distracted driving. Putting on makeup, texting, eating, talking on the phone, changing radio stations, reading a book, reaching for an object inside the vehicle are all common examples of distractions while driving a car. When a driver is not focused on the road, he or she is more likely to drive in the wrong direction.
- Driving under the influence. Although most people are aware of the potential hazards of driving while intoxicated, drunk driving accidents are still quite common. A large percentage of wrong-way driving crashes are caused by impaired drivers.
How to Prevent Wrong-Way Driving?
The best tips to prevent wrong-way driving are:
- Avoid driving at night
- Request an Uber or Lyft ride when drinking alcohol during the holidays
- Refrain from using your phone or engaging in other distractions while driving
- Observe road signs at all times
- Avoid road rage
- Plan your route in advance
- Do your best to drive on the roads you are familiar with
If your wrong-way driving car collision occurred at the fault of someone else, speak with our West Palm Beach auto accident attorneys at Pike & Lustig, LLP. Let our lawyers determine liability by calling at 561-291-8298.