According to a 2009 Transportation for America study, among the top cities for pedestrian fatalities are Orlando, Tamp, Miami and Jacksonville. In 2008, 490 pedestrians were fatally injured in car accidents in the state, making Florida the worst region for pedestrian deaths. Over the years, Florida routinely has been listed as one of the worst spots for fatal hit and run accidents. According to experts, there are many reasons why hit and run Miami car accidents happen:
1) Modern development in suburban and urban spaces has created lots of high-speed areas for traffic and fewer areas for bicyclists and walkers. It is no surprise that Miami bicycle accidents are also high when compared to other US cities. Larger urban centers such as Miami have fewer spaces that are just for safe walking and biking. The amount of money spent on safe pedestrian areas is just a fraction of the amount spent on roadways and car areas.
2) Drivers who are afraid of being caught. In many cases, hit and run Miami traffic accidents occur when a driver hits someone but keeps driving because he or she is already doing something illegal. If a driver is driving with no insurance, no license, or is driving drunk, he or she may be more likely to leave the scene of an accident, because he or she is afraid of the legal consequences. Since Florida leads the country in car accident insurance, it is plausible that there is also a high instance of people driving illegally.
3) A car-reliant culture. In Miami, having a car is not just about transportation; many people see it as a sign of independence or even a right. This creates all kinds of problems. Many people use cars when there are other alternatives, which in turn increases congestion and the risk of Miami car accidents. In addition, when people see cars as a right, they are more likely to want to drive when it is not safe to do so. For example, someone with an illness that makes it dangerous to drive may still get behind the wheel of a car because they do not want to lose their independence. Alternatively, someone who has a suspended license or no insurance may still drive because he or she “needs” to get to work.
4) Shared spaces. Miami does have many pedestrians and many congested spaces where pedestrians and vehicles share space. Parking lots, crosswalks, and other areas where pedestrians and vehicles share space are especially dangerous sites for Miami pedestrian accidents.
In Florida, hit and run accidents are taken seriously. Anyone who leaves the scene of an accident after causing property damage can be charged with a second degree misdemeanor and may face up to 60 days in jail as well as fines of up to $500. Anyone who leaves the scene of an accident after causing an injury can be charged with a third degree felony and may face up to 5 years in prison as well as fines of up to $5,000. Anyone who leaves the scene of an accident after causing a fatality can be charged with a first degree felony and may face up to 30 years in state prison as well as fines of up to $10,000. In addition, those who leave the scene of an accident can face Miami personal injury lawsuits, where they can be sued for damages caused.
If you have been injured in a hit and run accident, contact the Flaxman Law Group for representation and legal advice. Arrange for a free consultation with the Flaxman Law Group legal team to find out what can be done to find the person who injured you and what can be done to cover your medical costs and other expenses. There are options under Florida law; find out what they are by contacting the Flaxman Law Group today.