Anniversary of I-75 crash serves as a reminder of dangers on the road

Just over a year ago, Florida experienced one of the worst highway tragedies in the state’s history. Foggy weather conditions paired with a nearby wildlife fire created dangerous driving conditions early in the morning in January of 2012. As a result, Interstate 75 was closed until visibility improved. Once officials felt the fog and smoke had lifted, they re-opened I-75.

Unfortunately, the fog and smoke returned resulting in multiple car accidents. Many were injured. Eleven were killed.

Car accidents can happen in the blink of an eye, as illustrated by the above tragedy. Roadways can be clear and easy to manage one moment, than visibility can reduce to mere feet and crashes can happen in a heartbeat. This anniversary serves as a reminder that everyone on the nation’s roadways must operate their vehicles with care.

Unfortunately, dangerous weather conditions are not the only hazard drivers must prepare for.

Common causes of car crashes

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motor vehicle crashes are one of the leading causes of death in the United States. Generally, car accidents are caused by either negligent or reckless driving.

Negligent, or careless, driving occurs when a driver does not operate a vehicle responsibly. This can include driving while:

Using a cell phone or smartphone
Texting
Not following posted speed limits or driving too fast for conditions

Negligent driving is established in many ways. Some examples include proving that the other driver failed to follow traffic signs, failed to properly use signals while turning or drove while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Reckless driving includes more extreme violations or intentional conduct. Reckless driving is defined by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) as aggressive driving that includes unlawful driving actions like speeding, swerving outside of one’s lane and improper passing.

Car accidents can also result from drunk driving, defects in the automobile or defects on roadways.

Injuries sustained from car accidents can greatly impair one’s life. In some cases, medical intervention is required long after the accident, and the injured person may not be able to return to work. As a result, a car accident can negatively impact finances in many ways.

Regardless of the cause of an accident, if you are injured in a car crash and suspect that the other driver was negligent or reckless, compensation may be available to cover medical, rehabilitative and other expenses. Contact an experienced car accident lawyer to discuss your situation and better ensure your legal rights and remedies are protected.