July 4th tends to evoke backyard barbecues, poolside cocktails, and fireworks at dusk. We usually think of spending this holiday with family, and staying close to home. On the contrary, AAA pegs the fourth as one of their busiest days.
Did you know the average distance traveled on July 4th is 617 miles?
What’s more, analysis over a five-year study period shows the day is Florida drivers’ deadliest – just edging out New Year’s Day.
Knowing why the 4th of July is such a dangerous holiday could prevent you from becoming a statistic, so today we’re sharing some of the reasons for holiday crashes.
Florida’s Annual July 4th Crash Statistics
Florida ranks third, only behind Texas and California, for most fatal car crashes in the nation, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. More than three thousand deaths occur annually on the roadways across the state.
These are average statistics for the whole year. So, what seem to be the most common culprits over this holiday in particular? Let’s look at contributing factors for 4th of July accidents – both at home, and those we find more often out on the open road…
Fourth of July Car Crashes Close to Home in Florida
Besides the everyday distractions and issues one faces behind the wheel on Florida’s city streets, two primary causes stand out above the rest specifically on the 4th of July: road rage and drunk driving.
With so many more traveling than one would generally expect, clogged road arteries leave locals frustrated and angry. Road rage is proven to increase both your chances of getting into an accident and the severity of the crash if you do.
Focusing on another driver’s driving subtracts from calculating and judging the roadways. This can lead to speeding and other aggressive maneuvers like cutting off other drivers, tailgating, and driving between lanes.
Further, research shows 50 percent of drivers who start out as road rage victims become aggressors themselves. If you don’t anticipate a response from a fellow driver, you could be toast.
“It’s not that far.”
“I haven’t had that much to drink.”
While drunk driving is always one of the main contributors to fatal crash statistics across this state, on Independence Day there is a big uptick in justification for driving under the influence.
As a result, 40 percent of total vehicle fatalities over the holiday are due to driving drunk. This puts not only you at risk, but everyone else on the roadways you travel.
Wrecks on the Open Road in Florida
As we said, Florida roadtrippers abound over the Fourth, so what happens when you’ve traversed the inner-cities safely enough, and have finally made it out onto the open road?
Most accidents over long road trips in Florida can be chalked up to stranded motorists, and the fatigue that tends to creep in after hours on the road.
An estimated 520,000 motorists are stranded in Florida over the Independence Day holiday on average. Flat tires, overheating, dead batteries, keys locked in cars – these are all common issues.
Regardless of the exact cause, motorists stranded on Florida’s rural roadways simply equate to more pedestrians outside of the car. More people on road shoulders lend to the increase in out-of-town car crashes.
Finally, we face the fatigue of trekking hundreds of miles, often for only a day or two of fun. Seems like a good idea when you set out, but often doesn’t feel that way a few hours in.
Fatigue can come in many forms, including highway hypnosis – a condition that typically gets bundled into drowsy driving, but it can actually occur without being sleepy. Flying down an otherwise mundane roadway – no turns, no traffic lights – your brain goes into autopilot.
Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for the South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.
July 4th tends to evoke backyard barbecues, poolside cocktails, and fireworks at dusk. We usually think of spending this holiday with family, and staying close to home. On the contrary, AAA pegs the fourth as one of their busiest days. Did you know the average distance traveled on July 4th is 617 miles? What’s more, [..]
When most of us think about Fourth of July safety, we think about fireworks. Although improper use of fireworks can cause serious injuries, there’s a less obvious risk: food poisoning. Most Fourth of July celebrations involve outdoor gatherings, with perishable food that’s often brought in by a number of people, some of whom may not [..]
Summer is upon us, and it’s peak swimming pool season in the sunshine state. Although swimming is a great way to cool off and get some exercise, it can also be dangerous. Statistics show three children die every day from swimming pool accidents, and many more people sustain serious injuries. In many cases, these tragic [..]
Memorial Day offers a time to celebrate loved ones lost. It also signals the beginning of another Florida summer which often means road trip! In either case, we all find a reason and a way to cut loose. Unfortunately, these celebrations also lead to an uptick in car accidents. The primary causes? More cars on [..]
Johnson & Johnson has been a trusted name in cosmetics and household products for decades. However, in recent years, they have come under fire for lawsuits that suggest their talcum powder products caused cancer. The company isn’t just paying with a blow to their reputation, either. Earlier this year, a woman in California won $29 [..]
Every summer, Floridians look forward to that much needed break that summer camp provides: the kids to get away from the daily grind of the school year, and you to get a little breathing room from them. Exactly how much of a break would it be, though, if you’re still holding your breath in anticipation [..]
Temperatures are rising and a lot of long weekends are just around the corner. Whether you’re planning to hop in your boat for Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, or other summer holidays, it’s important to stay safe this season. Boating accidents do happen here in Florida, and many can be fatal. In 2017, 658 [..]
In the height of prom season, across the country, local police and first responders work with surrounding schools, survivors, and other drunk driving prevention organizations to reenact realistic reminders of why teens in their communities shouldn’t drink and drive. One survivor in Illinois recounted his experience of being ejected through a car window after plowing [..]
Cycling is not only a convenient and healthy way to get around in Florida, but it’s widely accepted as an effective means of reducing congestion on the road and improving the quality of our environment. However, the relationship between drivers and cyclists in Florida has always been tinged with antagonism. Motorists often complain that cyclists [..]
We live in an animal-loving society. Most of us interact with pets on a daily basis (ours or others), and they are an important part of many people’s lives. However, it is vital to remember that all animals are, at their core, wild, and sometimes things go wrong. What happens when an animal bites someone? [..]
Bars and advertisements for alcoholic products often encourage people to “drink responsibly,” but in some cases, the establishments or bartenders serving these drinks may be at least partially liable for a patron’s alcohol-related injury or death. Under certain circumstances, bars can—and should—be held responsible for over-serving patrons. Many states have “dram shop” laws (named [..]
Summertime is quickly approaching, which means barbecues, family vacations, and a lot of days sitting by the pool. While you and your loved ones enjoy the hot summer weather and cool water, it is important to keep yourself safe. In this post we will be focusing on swimming pool injuries and how to prevent them. [..]
The death of a loved one is traumatic and devastating experience— regardless of the cause. However, the ordeal can be especially upsetting if the death could have been avoided had it not been for the negligent actions of another. In Florida, surviving family members and loved ones may be able to recover compensation for [..]
Right now, all Florida drivers are required to have car insurance coverage that pays personal injury protection (PIP) benefits, but that may come to an end in 2019 if some lawmakers get their way. Florida currently operates under a “no-fault” system when it comes to paying insurance claims after a car accident. If a [..]
Florida’s summer is well underway, and the hot weather is a perfect excuse to get out on the water. With close to 900,000 registered vessels in the state, chances are that you or someone you know owns a boat and is planning to use it this season. Getting out on a lake or the ocean [..]
When you become a parent, every little decision regarding your child’s safety and development can become a hot debate. We’re not going to tell you how to raise your child, but we do have one piece of advice backed up with statistics from the AAP and NHTSA. When you are driving with your child, [..]
It’s not every day that you get into an accident and need to file a personal injury protection (PIP) suit. This type of litigation may be confusing to many, especially since PIP laws are constantly being debated and changed in Florida. However, it is possible for you to get through this process and receive [..]
What are your chances of getting hit by someone driving a rental car in Florida? Every year, the state of Florida has 15 million active drivers on its many roads and highways. About 250,000 drivers end up in car crashes annually in Florida. Since almost 85 million visitors come to enjoy Florida every year, [..]
Image: http://pixabay.com/en/dog-man-attacking-canine-training-78117/ When Pets Attack, They Can Cause Serious or Even Fatal Injuries Most people like dogs. How can you resist those adoring eyes, the wagging tail, and the warm, fuzzy head that seems to appear in your lap just when you’re feeling your lowest? So many Americans like dogs, in fact, that [..]
Car accidents can result in tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of dollars in medical bills, lost wages, and car repairs. How is it decided who will have to pay for these damages and bills? In Florida, it usually starts with personal injury protection (PIP). If you experience damages that add up to less than [..]