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Reckless Driving Is A Major Problem In Sarasota and SW Florida

Reckless driving in Florida isn’t a problem that is going away, and as a matter of fact, it’s not even going down. During the year 2020, throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, cases of reckless driving throughout Sarasota and all of Florida fell by 5%, showing positive progress for the first time. However, as statistics for 2021 rolled around, the number of reckless driving cases rose by more than 21% compared to the previous year. While Florida slowed a bit during 2020, resulting in lower reckless driving cases, the number of reckless driving incidents shot up dramatically as soon as regular activity resumed.

What Do These Florida Reckless Driving Numbers Mean?

Reckless driving auto accidents in Florida can be devastating, however, some habit changes have shown a bit of improvement. Wearing your seatbelt has been the law in Florida since 2009, but that doesn’t mean all drivers and their passengers comply. In 2019, Florida police issued more than 97,000 seatbelt violations throughout the year, but 2021 saw just over 73,000. More Floridians are choosing to belt up, and this is translating to positive trends in traffic deaths. Between the years 2021 and 2022, Florida saw a decrease in traffic fatalities by a whopping 13.4%.

Reckless driving may be posing a slightly lesser risk when it comes to auto accident fatalities, but what about pedestrians? In 2022, Florida saw more than 9,500 pedestrian accidents, resulting in just over 3,200 deaths. Reckless and risky driving is one of the top causes of pedestrian accidents throughout the state, and pedestrians do not have the benefit or ability to put their seatbelts on for safety.

Looking at the numbers in Florida, reckless driving is up, seatbelt habits are better, and traffic fatalities are down, but pedestrians may be the ones paying the price.

What Is Considered Reckless Driving In Florida?

There are a number of actions on the road that are covered under the “reckless driving” umbrella. Some examples of reckless driving often seen on local Florida roadways all throughout the state are:

• Traveling at excessive speeds – Speeding is one form of reckless driving that many Florida motorists are guilty of at one time or another, and may not even realize that they are driving recklessly at the time. Speed limits are posted for a reason, and exceeding the speed limit automatically counts as driving recklessly for roadways or road conditions. Speeding limits the control a person has over their vehicle, and it often leads to more severe accidents thereby putting all others sharing the roadway at risk.

• Tailgating – Like speeding, tailgating is something you can see often on Florida roads. Tailgating refers to following a bit too closely to the car in front of you, and this can be just by a little or at a very dangerously close distance. If the driver in the front position needs to suddenly slow or stop, the motorist tailgating becomes at risk for causing a rear-end collision.

• Distracted driving – Eating while driving, looking at a phone, playing with the radio, or digging through a bag – these are all examples of distracted driving. Any driving habits that take sight or attention off of the road and your surroundings are reckless.

• Aggressive driving – Aggressive driving can include a number of driving habits. Cutting off other vehicles at intersections, swerving in and out of traffic, and hurrying drivers to turn or pull over while they’re driving safely and within the speed limit are all forms of aggressive driving. Many drive aggressively in an effort to save time, failing to consider the time tacked on to a trip should they cause an accident.

Michael J. Babboni's wide-ranging legal career is based on the strong belief that everyone should be treated fairly and have access to effective legal help. Michael began putting his beliefs in action by helping the people of St. Petersburg Florida get what they are owed in civil trials fighting to protect families by making corporations pay, and honor their obligations.

Reckless Driving Is A Major Problem In Sarasota and SW Florida

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh

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