Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Lawyer
With the population of Broward County approaching 2 million, and an additional 4 million combined residents in Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties, driving through Fort Lauderdale can feel like traveling through a much larger metropolis. When you consider that approximately 75.5% of Florida residents are drivers, we have potentially millions of drivers crossing through our city on major thoroughfares like I-95, US 1, and east-west boulevards, like Broward, Sunrise, and Oakland, on any given day. And if you’ve ever driven down to Fort Lauderdale Beach on a holiday weekend or when the Tortuga Music Festival is in town, it will be no surprise to you that Fort Lauderdale leads the county in car accidents.
How a Car Accident Lawyer Views Fort Lauderdale
But traffic congestion isn’t the only factor that contributes to the Fort Lauderdale car accident epidemic. Fort Lauderdale is threaded with waterways, which create a unique hazard. Unlike most U.S. cities of its size, Fort Lauderdale has an international airport and a sea port that brings a disproportionately high number of commercial vehicles to its roads. The city of Fort Lauderdale has also experienced a resurgence of commercial and residential construction, resulting in special speed zones and detours. And one can never forget the contribution that the hundreds of hotels, bars, and restaurants make to the high occurrence of alcohol-related accidents.
How Fort Lauderdale’s Geography Can Help Your Car Accident Case
It’s a well-known fact among car accident lawyers that some cities are more dangerous to drive in than others. That doesn’t mean that the drivers are necessarily the problem—although there is an argument to be made for that, as well. With that in mind, most personal injury attorneys in Fort Lauderdale are aware that the city offers a unique set of driving hazards. Here are a few examples:
Submerged Vehicle Accidents
Fort Lauderdale is the self-proclaimed “Venice of America” due to the numerous inlets crisscrossing the landscape. East of Federal Highway, it would be difficult to find a major road that doesn’t border a body of water at some point. Because of this, Fort Lauderdale has an unusually high number of vehicles going into the water, sometimes resulting in serious injuries or even death.
Freight Rail and Commuter Train Car Accidents
Nothing is more frustrating than seeing the train crossing arm lower as you approach Dixie Highway. If it’s the Brightline or TriRail, you may only be facing a minute’s delay, but if it’s a hundred-car freight train, you can be sitting much longer delay. In many cases, people are inclined to try to beat the crossing arm or to drive around it. Unfortunately, train accidents in Broward have been responsible for an increasing number of injuries and deaths.
Fort Lauderdale hosts a Greyhound Station, an Amtrack station, a TriRail station, and is home to one of the three (soon to be four) Brightline stations. In addition to the commuter trains, there are a number of freight trains that move through the city on the way to and from the port to the rest of the country. In fact, the Federal Railroad Administration has reported a 20 percent increase in the number of train accidents at public crossings in 2017 and 2018 over previous years.
Construction Zone Accidents
With the Fort Lauderdale real estate explosion returning after a brief hiatus, there aren’t many routes you can take that won’t bring you past rows and rows of barricades. These can be confusing to drivers, which often leads to accidents.
Parking Lot Collisions
Residents of Fort Lauderdale have long complained about the lack of mass transit servicing the downtown area, and now, with the cancellation of the Wave streetcar project, there doesn’t seem to be any near-term solution to the parking issue. There is already a significant parking shortage, and if condo construction is any indication, we can expect the parking shortage to only get worse. Crowded parking lots are notorious for producing low-speed car accident injuries, like whiplash.
The Port, Airport, and Commercial Trucking Accidents
Every city in Broward County has commercial truck traffic—Fort Lauderdale has more. Even though you may have noticed Broward Sheriff’s Deputies protecting Port Everglades and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, the main entrances to both facilities are at the south end of Fort Lauderdale. That means that there is a disproportionately high number of commercial vehicles entering and exiting major Fort Lauderdale roads like Federal Highway, State Road 84, and I-95.
The cab of a commercial truck weight several times more than the largest of passenger vehicles, making the potential for injury in a commercial truck accident substantially higher.
Tourism and Seasonal Congestion Accidents
Ask anyone in Fort Lauderdale’s service industry when “the season” is, and they’ll tell you that it starts at Thanksgiving and ends Easter weekend (more or less the opposite of hurricane season). During that time the residential population swells from snowbirds, vacationers, spring-breakers, and anyone who is seeking a temporary respite from brutal winter temperatures. In fact, Broward County sees in excess of 15 million tourists every year. That means that not only are there more cars on the roadways, but many of the additional drivers are unfamiliar with the local terrain and are often drinking. That creates a much riskier environment for driving—particularly east of US 1 near the beaches. In fact, the Miami New Times has listed Las Olas Boulevard and A1A as one of the ten worst intersections in Broward County.
Inclement Weather-Related Car Accidents
According to the AAA, wet roads cause or contribute to 1.2 million accidents every year, and Fort Lauderdale experiences flash storms most months of the year. Because of the materials we use to build roadways, the pavement is most slippery within the first few minutes of a rainfall. This is the cause of many rear-collisions and intersection accidents in Fort Lauderdale.
Personal Injury Car Accident Attorney in Fort Lauderdale
Whether you’re a tourist, part-time resident, or you call Fort Lauderdale your year-round home, you should be aware that it is a dangerous place to drive. If you are injured in a car accident, you could be facing astronomical medical expenses and months of recovery time. 1-800-INJURED is a referral service for car accident attorneys and medical services. Contact us immediately to be connected with one of our network attorneys.