Fort Lauderdale Wrong-Way Accident Attorney

Wrong-way accidents in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, while more uncommon than other crashes like sideswipes or fender benders, are hazardous and can have severe consequences. The terrible reality is emphasized by the Federal Highway Administration’s statistics, which show that 400 to 500 people die in these accidents every year. Although this data shows a small percentage of all car accident fatalities, the fatality rate is shockingly high considering the low number of wrong-way accidents.

You must get legal guidance immediately if you or someone you care about has been involved in a wrong-way accident. The Fort Lauderdale wrong-way accident lawyers at Schilling & Silvers Property and Accident Attorneys have a wealth of experience when it comes to settling a wide range of car accident claims in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Being a victim of this kind of accident can lead to a host of expenses related to medical and property damage. Florida’s no-fault insurance system can complicate issues, forcing you to pay for the costs your insurer can’t or won’t pay for. Our devoted team dedicates themselves to ensuring you get the compensation you deserve to help with your expenses.

Wrong-way accidents are frequently fatal due to the resulting head-on collisions. These collisions, where cars approach one another head-on before colliding, are among the deadliest. Vehicles may flip or roll due to the accident’s momentum, resulting in more crashes and severe damage. Common injuries in these accidents include:

  • Broken bones
  • Internal organ damage
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Whiplash

Consider the following situations:

  • After you pick up your child from Sunland Park Academy, a distracted driver hits you head-on after they accidentally turn the wrong way onto a one-way street.
  • You’re driving to Paradigm Cinemas for a movie night, and you get hit by a drunk driver traveling the wrong way on E Sunrise Blvd.

In both scenarios, the sudden and severe nature of these accidents highlights the importance of having a knowledgeable wrong-way accident attorney in Fort Lauderdale to help guide you through the resulting insurance and legal landscapes, ensuring you receive the support and compensation you deserve.

How and Why Do Wrong-Way Crashes Happen in Fort Lauderdale, Florida?

Wrong-way crashes in Fort Lauderdale, and more broadly in Florida, happen for various reasons. The Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles report paints a clear picture of wrong-way accidents, their severity, and the accident frequency. The report shows:

  • Fatalities: 115 people tragically lost their lives due to wrong-way accidents.
  • Incapacitating Injuries: 245 people suffered injuries severe enough to impede their everyday activities.
  • Non-Incapacitating Injuries: 409 people sustained injuries that, while not debilitating, still required medical attention.
  • Potential Injuries: There were 595 cases where people possibly sustained injuries in these accidents.
  • No Injuries: Impressively, 1,846 incidents resulted in no injuries, highlighting the effectiveness of safety features and possibly the quick response of drivers in avoiding more severe outcomes.

Focusing on Broward County,  our wrong-way accident lawyers in Fort Lauderdale find that the statistics for the same year are equally telling:

  • Total Crashes: There were 34,050 crashes, with a three-year average (2018 to 2020) of 38,749. This high number reflects the area’s busy and often challenging driving conditions.
  • Total Fatalities: 268 lives were lost in these accidents, with a three-year average of 240 fatalities. This number underscores the need for better road safety measures and driver awareness.
  • Total Injuries: There were 18,984 injuries reported, with a three-year average of 22,433. These figures highlight the impact of traffic accidents on public health and the importance of preventive strategies.

These statistics reveal that wrong-way crashes, although a small percentage of total accidents, are particularly dangerous and are more likely to result in severe outcomes. A study by AAA found that:

  • From 2010 to 2014, the US had 1,877 wrong-way crash fatalities, and Florida had 175.
  • From 2015 to 2018, the US had 2,008 wrong-way crash fatalities, and Florida had 135.

A Deeper Look Into the Causes of Wrong-Way Accidents in Fort Lauderdale

As experienced Fort Lauderdale wrong-way accident attorneys, our legal team knows that understanding the causes of these accidents is critical, and the most significant factors include but are not limited to:

Defective Car Parts: While less common due to technological advances, defective car parts can occasionally lead to accidents, with manufacturers potentially liable in such cases.

Distracted Driving: Distractions can vary from texting to changing music, with texting being particularly hazardous as it diverts a driver’s eyes, hands, and attention from the road, leading to wrong-way merging or turns.

Drivers Unfamiliar with Roadways: Drivers in unfamiliar areas are more prone to wrong turns or following GPS instructions incorrectly, resulting in wrong-way maneuvers.

Drivers with Impaired Abilities: Nearly a quarter of these accidents are caused by older drivers. Impaired vision and slower reaction times make it harder for them to recognize and respond quickly to hazardous situations.

Drunk Driving: A notable portion of wrong-way collisions involve a driver under the influence of alcohol or drugs, often with a significantly high blood alcohol content (BAC).

Inadequate Signage: Insufficient or unclear signage, especially on ramps, is a significant factor in wrong-way driving (WWD) incidents.

Poor Road Design: Cloverleaf intersections or proximity of highway entrances and exits in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, can confuse drivers, potentially causing them to enter the wrong lane or road.

Taking Detours: Rerouting in traffic, especially during congestions or road works, can inadvertently lead to wrong-way crashes.

Understanding these numbers and their causes is critical for creating prevention efforts and providing appropriate support and legal representation to people affected by such tragic incidents in Fort Lauderdale and the larger Broward County region.

If you have been injured in an accident and need immediate legal assistance, reach out to a Fort Lauderdale wrong-way accident lawyer at Schilling & Silvers Property and Accident Attorneys today.

Recovering Compensation for Injuries After a Wrong-Way Accident in Fort Lauderdale

In Fort Lauderdale, when you’re trying to get compensation after a wrong-way accident, the amount you are eligible to receive largely depends on different factors related to your injuries and their impact on your life. These factors include:

Extent of Your Injuries: The severity and type of injuries you sustained in the accident are important factors when calculating your compensation amount. More severe injuries generally result in more significant settlements because of the increasing medical care and rehabilitation costs.

Effect on Your Life: Compensation also considers how the injuries have impacted your daily life. This covers any limitations or disabilities, your ability to enjoy former interests and activities, and the overall influence on your quality of life.

Anticipated Recovery Time: Another important consideration is the length of your rehabilitation. Longer recovery times may result in higher compensation because they frequently come with missed wages, lengthy medical treatment, and longer physical or emotional therapy.

Economic Damages: These refer to measurable financial losses such as medical bills, lost income, and costs of future medical care or rehabilitation.

Non-Economic Damages: These include compensation for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.

Potential Future Impacts: If the injuries are expected to have long-term or permanent effects, such as chronic pain or a reduced capacity to work, compensation may also include future damages.

Finding out how much someone should get compensated is a complicated process that often requires expert statements and a lot of paperwork to be done right. An experienced wrong-way accident attorney in Fort Lauderdale can help you figure out these damages and work with insurance companies to ensure that the money they give you covers all your losses. In Fort Lauderdale, victims of wrong-way accidents should seek legal advice to understand their rights and the compensation they may be entitled to.

How to Deal With Insurance Companies After a Wrong-Way Accident

Dealing with insurance companies after a wrong-way accident can be a challenging process. It’s crucial to approach this with caution and an informed strategy, as how you handle these interactions can impact the outcome of your insurance claim. Here are some critical steps to consider:

  • Report the Accident Promptly. Inform your insurance carrier as soon as possible about the accident. Most policies require you to report an accident immediately and to cooperate completely.
  • Understand Your Policy. Review your insurance policy to understand what is covered and your rights. Knowing your policy in detail will help you to understand the extent of coverage you can expect.
  • Document Everything. Keep detailed records of all your medical treatments, repairs, and related expenses. Documentation will be helpful when you negotiate a payout with any insurance company.
  • Avoid Immediate Settlement Offers. Be wary of quick settlement offers from insurance companies. These initial offers are often lower than you may be entitled to, especially before you know the full extent of your injuries and damages.
  • Be Careful with Your Communication. When discussing the accident with insurance representatives, stick to the facts. Avoid speculating or admitting fault. Remember that the company can use your statements in the claim process.
  • Do Not Sign Anything Without Understanding It. Before signing any documents from the insurance company, ensure you fully understand what you agree to. Having a Fort Lauderdale wrong-way accident lawyer review these documents is usually a good idea.
  • Consider Legal Representation. An attorney experienced in car accident claims can be invaluable because they can handle negotiations with the insurance company, help you understand your rights, and ensure you receive fair compensation.
  • Know When to Escalate. If you believe the insurance company is not handling your claim fairly or is not offering a satisfactory settlement, talk to your wrong-way accident lawyer in Fort Lauderdale about the possibility of escalating the matter, potentially going to court.
  • Prepare for Possible Denials. If your claim gets denied, understand the reasons and consult with your attorney on the appropriate steps to challenge the decision.

How to Prove Fault in a Fort Lauderdale Wrong-Way Driving Accident

Proving fault in a Fort Lauderdale wrong-way driving accident involves establishing several vital elements to support your case. While it might seem obvious that the driver traveling in the wrong direction is at fault, gathering comprehensive evidence to solidify your claim is essential. Here are the crucial steps:

Establish Duty. First, you must show that the other driver had a duty to drive responsibly and cautiously. This duty is inherent to all drivers and extends to other motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians.

Prove Breach of Duty. The next step is for you or your Fort Lauderdale wrong-way accident attorney to demonstrate that the other driver breached this duty by not driving with the required care and caution. This is often the most critical part of proving fault.

Show Causation. You must directly link the breach of duty to the accident. This means proving that the accident occurred as a direct result of the other driver’s failure to drive safely.

Document Damages. Finally, provide evidence of the injuries and expenses you incurred from the accident. This documentation should cover medical bills, lost wages, and other related costs.

What is “Breach of Duty” in a Florida Car Crash?

It can be challenging to figure out why the other party drove on the wrong side of the road. In many circumstances, the reasons for these actions are not immediately apparent. Even if the cause of the wrong-way driving is initially a mystery, understanding the breach of duty is critical. Here’s how to approach it:

Police Reports: Get a copy of the police report from the crash. This report can contain vital information, such as whether the other driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Eyewitness Statements: Gather statements from eyewitnesses, if available. They can provide insights into how the accident happened and where the other driver started driving in the wrong direction.

Reports of Wrong-Way Driving: Sometimes, other drivers or pedestrians might have noticed the wrong-way driver before the crash. Such statements can be crucial in establishing the timeline and pattern of negligent driving.

Legal Consultation: Consulting with a lawyer is a vital step. They can conduct a thorough investigation, gather necessary evidence, and help showcase the breach of duty in legal terms.

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Florida has implemented a comprehensive Wrong-Way Driving Initiative in response to the ongoing challenge of wrong-way driving incidents. Spearheaded by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), this initiative aims to enhance road safety by addressing the root causes of wrong-way accidents and implementing preventive measures. For individuals who have experienced a wrong-way accident in Fort Lauderdale, several local resources can help:

  • Atlantic Auto Repair: Specializing in automotive repairs, Atlantic Auto Repair offers services to fix damages caused by car accidents. Their expertise can help in restoring your vehicle to its pre-accident condition.
  • Laz One Auto Repair: Another reliable option for vehicle repairs, Laz One Auto Repair provides a range of services to address issues resulting from traffic collisions. Their experienced technicians can ensure your car is safely back on the road.
  • Fort Lauderdale Chiropractic: After a wrong-way accident, chiropractic care can be essential for addressing physical injuries, especially those related to the spine and neck. Fort Lauderdale Chiropractic offers treatments that can aid in recovery from such injuries
  • Radius TBI: For individuals who have suffered traumatic brain injuries (TBI) as a result of a wrong-way accident, Radius TBI provides specialized care and rehabilitation services. Their focus on brain injury recovery can be crucial for those facing the long-term effects of a TBI.

Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Lawyers

At Schilling & Silvers Property and Accident Attorneys, our extensive experience as Fort Lauderdale wrong-way accident lawyers has given us the expertise to handle even the most complex cases. We understand these accidents’ unique challenges and are committed to providing our clients with the dedicated legal support they need. Beyond wrong-way accidents, our expertise extends to various other traffic-related cases, including rear-end accidents, distracted driving incidents, speeding-related crashes, hit-and-run incidents, head-on collisions, and accidents involving Uber and Lyft vehicles. Contact us for a free consultation.

Some of the areas our law firm serves includes Imperial Point, North Andrews Gardens, North Lauderdale, Lauderdale Lakes, Wilton Manors, Lazy Lake, Roosevelt Gardens, Sea Ranch Lakes, Coral Ridge, Pompano Beach, and more.