Fatal motorcycle accidents cause more than just death; they also result in a significant amount of emotional devastation for the families and friends of its victims. If someone you love has been killed in a Miami motorcycle accident, it is likely that you have a lot of questions and also, may feel confused as to where to turn next. However, there are steps you can take to ensure that you and your love one's rights are protected. One of the most important things you can do is to contact a qualified Miami motorcycle accident attorney to advise you as to all of your legal options and, to help you fight for the compensation you deserve. With this in mind, the following are some ways that a Miami Motorcycle Accident Lawyer can protect your rights and the rights of your family during this painful time:
The car industry is understandably proud of the advances that have been made in the design of vehicles and the increased safety features that protect drivers and passengers from accidents. However, regardless of the improvements, that moment when you are stopped at a stoplight or at a standstill on the Palmetto Expressway and suddenly your entire body feels the impact, with your neck snapping forward and then slamming back into the headrest, you know you are in trouble. If you have suffered serious harm in a rear end collision, the experienced Miami car accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone, & Urbano, P.A. can assist you in getting the damages recovery to help you heal.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has not conducted a comprehensive study on head restraints and whiplash pathology since 1996, but the occurrence of whiplash and whiplash-associated disorders (WADs) remain serious consequences of many rear end accidents, with up to forty percent (40%) of whiplash sufferers experiencing long-term pain.
Whiplash can occur as the result of a rear end collision when the impacting vehicle is moving at a very low rate of speed, even if the driver or passenger in the vehicle being impacted did not experience significant forward extension of the neck. However, an accident victim often will experience the violent acceleration of the head and neck towards the windshield with an equally dramatic snap back against the headrest when the seatbelt stops the forward momentum.
Causing a hit-and-run accident in Florida may give rise to serious criminal charges if certain statutory criteria are met. In other words, when someone is involved in a car accident in Florida, it is everyone's responsibility to stop at a reasonable distance from the crash site, exchange important contact information, and provide assistance to injured victims, if applicable.
If a driver in Florida fails to follow these crucial steps, they will likely be charged with leaving the scene of an accident, which depending upon the circumstances, can have devastating and potentially life-long legal consequences for the offender. For example, if someone is at fault for a car accident not involving death or injury, then they could risk losing their license for several years and face prison time. However, if death or injury resulted from a hit and run accident, then the wrongdoer could face serious felony charges, such as a long-term imprisonment sentence, a permanent criminal record and harsh monetary fines. If you are the victim of a hit and run accident in Florida, our car accident lawyers in Miami suggest you take the following steps to hold the offender accountable for your accident:
If a person is hurt in a car accident in the United States, chances are about 14% to 15% that the driver responsible for the accident will not be insured. With the costs of living and everything else seemingly on the rise, it isn't a surprise that many are taking huge risks by foregoing state mandated essentials, such as automobile insurance. According to recent statistical data issued from the Insurance Research Council, our Miami personal injury lawyers find the amount of uninsured drivers in the United States is currently around 14%. However, in Florida, the amount of uninsured drivers is shocking, and accounts for nearly 20% of all drivers state-wide. This percentage is much higher in South Florida. In fact, the State of Florida has the highest rate of uninsured drivers in the nation. With this in mind, it is important to consider the ways in which you can protect yourself, such as adding uninsured motorist coverage to your existing auto insurance policy.
Why is uninsured motorist coverage important if I already carry no fault insurance?
Even though nearly every state, including Florida, requires its motorists to have automobile insurance, many purchase policies with the minimum limits allowable by law (in Florida, the statutory minimum amounts of personal injury protection and property damage limits are $10,000 each, there is no requirement to carry liability insurance). For example, if you have been involved in an accident, the responsible party's insurance policy may not have liability coverage or may have limits that do not cover the full extent of your damages, which could include pain and suffering, disability, scarring or disfigurement, lost wages/income, medical expenses and a litany of other types of relevant out-of-pocket expenses. Click here to watch Miami personal injury lawyer, Stewart Greenberg, discuss different types of Florida Insurance Coverage.
Specifically, in many car accident cases in Florida, the victim had the opportunity to purchase something called "underinsured motorist coverage," or UIM coverage, but for whatever reason, failed to obtain this very important form of coverage. This leaves them with the potential problem of having to front the bill for expenses that would have otherwise been covered had they understood the importance of an underinsured motorist policy.
Specifically, UIM coverage is very similar to uninsured motorist coverage, except for the fact that the wrongdoer has insurance that is not sufficient to fully compensate victims for their losses. Therefore, if a person is injured, they can look to this policy to cover the gap between the wrongdoer's insurance amounts and the total costs of their damages (including personal and property). With this in mind, there are several reasons why it is important to consider purchasing UIM coverage, such as:
Unfortunately, it isn't uncommon nowadays to notice potholes on roads located throughout the Miami-Dade area. Potholes refer to holes that form on roadways due in large part to normal wear and tear. Specifically, they occur when the upper most layer of an asphalt road has worn away to the point where the concrete base is exposed. To illustrate, when it rains, water collects within this gap, further increasing the size of the hole to the point where they can become deep and highly dangerous for drivers. During the hot summer months in Florida, it can also cause roads to become extensively damaged, leading to large potholes and other dangerous conditions.
While potholes of all shapes and sizes are hazardous no matter where they located, they often cause the most severe injuries in high density areas frequented by cars, trucks and other vehicles. Quite often, our motorcycle accident lawyers in Miami know how potholes can cause serious and life-threatening injuries, especially for those who drive road bikes and motorcycles, as they are not afforded the same levels of protection as other types of vehicles. For example, if a motorcyclist or road biker strikes a pothole, they can easily be ejected from their vehicle and sustain tragic injuries such as bone fractures, head, back and neck injuries, traumatic brain injury, severe concussions and even death.
Surprisingly, parking lot-related accidents occur almost on a daily basis throughout the State of Florida. Though people tend to drive slowly while in a parking lot, many car accidents nonetheless occur due to numerous cars traveling in multiple directions, often within a limited amount of space. While many of these accidents do not result in serious injuries or death, others end up causing serious injuries and sometimes, claim innocent lives. The good news is that through following a few simple steps, parking lot accidents can be prevented.
In light of the above, the following are some crucial ways you can avoid being involved in a parking lot accident:
• Always watch where you are going when walking in a parking lot. No matter what, drivers of cars and other types of vehicles may have a hard time seeing you, whether through inattention or due to limited visibility.
• Do not assume that people are paying attention. Always look both ways before crossing lanes or the roads within a parking lot.
A large number of car accidents unfortunately result from aggressive driving, which can include everything from severe road rage to a person's attempts to intimidate or invoke fear in other drivers. One of the most difficult aspects of road rage is that it is often hard to prevent, as it isn't always easy to tell when someone is driving in an over-aggressive manner until it is too late. Although our Miami car accident attorneys understand these types of accidents can be hard to avoid, there are ways that you can protect yourself by recognizing its major warning signs, such as:
1. Tailgating. This is one of the most common ways that a person practicing road rage tends to drive. For whatever reason, the aggressive driver will repeatedly speed up and slow-down in order to intimidate the driver in front of them.
2. Weaving in and out of traffic. Aggressive drivers are notorious for recklessly changing lanes, which can cause them to cut off other drivers, stop short, and create dangerous driving conditions for all vehicles in their path.
Of the many different types of automobile accidents, there is one in particular that presents a great risk of harm to toddlers and children alike. Despite being highly preventable, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released some alarming statistics regarding what are referred to as "back-over" accidents. Specifically, most of these types of accidents occurred when the driver, not noticing that a child was within their path, unintentionally backs their vehicle up and strikes them.
Oftentimes, our Miami personal injury lawyers find that blind spots account for the main reason why a driver failed to realize that a child was present as they were backing up. In fact, the CDC reports that between 2001 and 2003, over 7,400 children between the ages of one and fourteen years were treated for non-fatal injuries stemming from a back-over accident. Of these, approximately half were extremely young children, with ages ranging from one to four.
The CDC further provides that most back-over accidents, roughly 40%, occurred in a person's driveway or in a parking lot. These typically cause the most severe injuries to children that are either sitting, standing, playing or walking within the vicinity of a vehicle. About 80% of the time, the child that is struck under these set of circumstances often requires emergent care. With this in mind, the most frequently treated injuries for back-over accidents are:
• Injuries to arms and legs (about 53%)
• Head, neck and facial injuries (28%)
• Cuts, bruises and abrasions (56%)
• Bone fractures and internal injuries (nearly 40% for children ages 4 and under) and about 17.5% for children between the ages of 10 and 14.
In light of these startling statistics, it is important to understand how to prevent these types of accidents. Simply apprising your friends and family about the risks associated with back-over accidents is certainly a step in the right direction. Also, consider the following:
Sometimes it is inevitable that a driver must pull over to the side of a road, whether due to an emergency, inclement weather, the receipt of an important phone call, or some other important reason. However, this can be an extremely dangerous undertaking, especially in high density and heavily-trafficked areas of the State. Specifically, while pulled over, cars and trucks can whiz by at extremely high speeds and fail to see you, resulting in a potential deadly situation for you and all other parties involved.
According to recent studies, it is by far better to stop and take a break at a rest stop or some other place with a parking lot rather than pulling over onto a shoulder lane. Specifically, studies reveal that in light of the increased incidence of distracted driving (i.e. cell phone calls & texting), the numbers of collisions that occur in shoulder lanes have skyrocketed - leaving you and your family vulnerable to injury. Since you cannot always avoid having to pull over, you should keep the following safety tips in mind:
In the United States, sports utility vehicle (SUV) rollover accidents injure and kill approximately 6,000 to 10,000 people per year. As most people are aware, SUVs - due to the nature of their design - are more likely to tip and rollover than other types of vehicles. While only 3% of all types of accidents involve rollovers, these nonetheless account for more than 30% of occupant deaths. Otherwise stated, SUV rollover accidents do not typically involve just injuries - oftentimes, our car accident lawyers in Miami find they have fatal results. In fact, rollover accidents are responsible for about 58% of all deaths in SUVs.
In light of the above, how do SUV rollover accidents happen? Under the right set of circumstances, any vehicle, such as a car or motorcycle, can roll over. However, SUVs, being taller and narrower than many other types of vehicles, are more vulnerable to rolling over since their center of gravity is higher, making them extremely top heavy. As an SUV rounds a curve, its center of gravity shirts to one side, which can dramatically affect its balance and result in a potential rollover accident.
Some of the most serious and deadly automobile accident cases that we handle in the Miami-Dade area and beyond are broadside crash cases. A broadside accident, also referred to as a T-bone or side impact crash, typically occurs at intersections where one car will hit the other "broad side," or at a right angle. This potentially fatal scenario can happen anywhere however, are often more serious when they occur at four-way intersections. Oftentimes, side impact crashes - due to a combination of speed, severity and the directness of impact - seriously injure and sometimes kill the driver and/or the passengers in the victim's vehicle.
According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), our car accident attorneys in Miami find that more than 30,000 people in the United States were killed and over 2 million injured in traffic accidents - many of which involved broadside crashes. Of those injured, many suffered from serious back, neck and head trauma as a result of their accident. With this in mind, why do broadside impacts result in such severe and potentially fatal injuries? Specifically, when a side impact crash occurs, a vehicle is often knocked off course and typically becomes the subject of another, more severe collision. To illustrate, the broadsided vehicle is often pushed to the side, either towards the side of a road (potentially striking guardrails, telephone poles, and parked vehicles) or in the direct line of oncoming traffic (where head on collisions are likely).
Regardless of circumstances, being involved in a car accident can be both physically and emotionally traumatic. However, having to deal with one's insurance carrier can make the process even more difficult to bear. While insurance companies promise all sorts of benefits and perks (and collectively spend billions in persuasive advertising to induce you to choose their specific brand), our Miami personal Injury lawyers have learned through many years of litigation that insurers will do anything to make a profit and protect their financial interests at all costs. In essence, what you see and are promised are not usually what you get.
As such, knowing what insurance companies may do and also, how to proactively prevent issues is the key to success. Accordingly, consider the following ways that an insurance company may respond to your car accident claim:
According to the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles, there are more than 250,000 accidents that occur within the State of Florida each year. Sometimes, these accidents can be minor, or end up leaving victims with serious and life-threatening injuries. With this in mind, it is important to consider that accidents can and do happen, making it essential for people to learn what to do should this happen to them. In fact, what many people don't consider after being in an accident is that what they do and say can be used against them, especially if they are fully or partially at fault.
Our experienced, Miami car accident lawyers know that this can even occur if an accident was caused entirely by the other driver. While it is understandable that the moments after a crash can be extremely scary, (sometimes leading to an inadvertent slip of the tongue), it is crucial to keep calm and remain silent - no matter what. In other words, let's say you're tired, had a long day, and all of a sudden you are in a collision that you did not see coming. Your natural instinct is to jump out of your car, make sure that the person is not injured, and try to figure out what happened. Although these intentions are certainly noteworthy, they can be used against you later on by insurance companies and their attorneys who are trying to blame you for the accident if you talk at the scene.
Accordingly, here are some steps you can take to avoid getting yourself into trouble at the scene of an accident:
A sideswipe accident occurs when two cars are riding next to one another in the same direction and their sides collide. As with any type of auto accident, a sideswipe-related crash can result in severe injury to all parties involved, especially passengers. According to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, there are more than 240,000 sideswipe crashes that occur in the U.S. each year. Of these numbers, over 25,000 involve injuries with roughly 2,500 resulting in death.
Undoubtedly, our Miami car accident attorneys know injuries that result from sideswipe collisions - commonly those affecting the neck, back, spine and brain - are often more severe than other types of accidents given that protective devices such as air bags are normally designed for front and rear-end collisions. Additionally, sideswipe accidents can also cause severe damage to your vehicle, which can be both time consuming and extremely costly to repair.
What then, specifically causes sideswipe accidents? Usually, these types of collisions occur when drivers change lanes without looking or carelessly weave in and out of lanes. Oftentimes, impaired or distracted drivers are to blame for causing sideswipe accidents due to the fact that they are not focused on the road. For instance, if someone is sending text messages while driving, they can veer into other lanes without even realizing it, increasing the likelihood of sideswipe collisions to occur.
While it may seem rather straightforward, determining who is at fault and proving injuries caused by a sideswipe collision can sometimes be a daunting task. That is why it is important to take proactive measures to prevent these accidents from occurring. Although not every accident can be avoided, you should certainly consider the following tips in maximizing your safety on the road:
1. Be sure to look carefully before changing lanes. Your car's blind spots can hide other vehicles, making sideswipe collisions much more likely should you change lanes. Taking the time to look carefully can end up being a life-saving decision.