There’s no question that the roads in Florida are dangerous. With impaired drivers and reckless drivers and texting drivers and just simply bad drivers, it’s a daily recipe for disaster. There are things you can do, however, to keep yourself and your family a little safer on the road:
Step 1: Have enough insurance. While that won’t actually help you avoid an accident, you have to buy the insurance before you start your car. It does you no good to buy adequate insurance after you’re injured in an accident.
Step 2: Maintain your vehicle. Check the brakes, the oil, get that cracked windshield replaced, make sure all your lights and blinkers work and rotate or replace your tires as needed. Keep the car clean and take it in for regular maintenance. It’s hard to be safe when your vehicle fails in the middle of the interstate.
Step 3: Put your cell phone away. If you have to send an email, pull over. If you have to read a new text message or Facebook post, pull over. If you have to reroute your GPS, pull over. If your car is in motion, keep your hands on the wheel and use a hands-free device for necessary phone calls. It’s still legal to make phone calls while driving in Florida, but legal doesn’t mean safe.
Step 4: Drive safely. Follow the speed limit and be attentive. Know the rules of the road and consider reviewing them regularly. Do you know who is supposed to yield first at a four-way stop? What happens if traffic signals fail? How long are you supposed to signal a turn or a merge? If you don’t know, find out.
Step 5: Avoid road rage and bad drivers. You will regularly encounter distracted drivers, reckless drivers, and drivers who will cut you off and drive away with one finger in the air. You may be tempted to respond with anger or try to track down such miscreants and morons to teach them a lesson about driving… but before you do, take a moment to consider whether your anger is more important than your safety. If you can remain calm and put as much distance between your vehicle and theirs as possible, you’ll have a much better chance of arriving home safely.
If you’ve been injured in an accident with someone who didn’t follow this list, there is still hope for a full physical and financial recovery. Consult a qualified attorney as soon as possible to review your rights and to make sure they’re protected. Near Daytona Beach, contact the personal injury law firm of Zimmet & Zimmet for a free consultation.