Articles Posted in Manatee County Auto Accident Attorney

A man died and several others were injured in Manatee County after being involved in a multi-car collision just after 8:30 p.m. Thursday.

The crash occurred at 14th Street West and 53rd Avenue West.

Reports indicate that a 22-year-old woman driving a Dodge Charger made a left turn into the path of a 17-year-old driving a 2005 Chevy Silverado.

In the bed of the truck was a tire, which troopers believe launched into the air, smashing into the front of a Nissan Titan.

According to reports, the woman had a male passenger in her car who did not survive the accident. The passenger side of her Charger took the brunt of the impact. A 17-year-old passenger in her vehicle was also seriously injured. Her third passenger only suffered minor injuries.

Everyone else involved in the crash suffered minor injuries.

When a multi-vehicle crash occurs, there could be multiple parties to blame. It is important to determine fault in order to determine who is to blame for any injuries or tragic deaths. This must be done by conducting an investigation into the crash site to figure out exactly what happened.

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The Fourth of July is the perfect time to enjoy food, fun, and maybe a few drinks with family and friends. Whether you’re attending a fireworks show or hitting the bars, Tampa is the perfect place to celebrate America’s Birthday.

The sad truth is that Independance Day is one of the most dangerous holidays of the year. Fireworks, hot grills, traffic, and other hazards can cause serious injuries or even death. Drunk driving rates spike over the July Fourth weekend.

The best way to prevent injuries and deaths this holiday weekend is to follow the below safety tips:

Do Not Drink And Drive

The best way to avoid a DUI collision is to stay sober if you will be getting behind the wheel of a car. Too many people believe they can operate a vehicle safely after a few drinks, but the truth is that driving under the influence puts your life, your passengers’ lives, and the lives of others sharing the road at risk, so do not chance it.  

Look Out For Possible Drunk Drivers

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, police use more than 100 visual cues to identify drunk drivers. Knowing the signs can help you to avoid a DUI crash. Some of the cues include:

  • Swerving
  • Almost hitting an object in the road
  • Stopping well before or after a stop line
  • Not using headlights at night
  • Using the wrong turn signal
  • Parking too far from a curb
  • Abnormal accelerating and braking patterns

Use Lyft Or Uber

Both Uber and Lyft operate in the Tampa Bay area. If you intend to drink or if your DD gets drunk, use a taxi or rideshare service to get to your destination. You can even split the fare with your friends. Even if you are riding alone, the cost of a ride home safe  is much cheaper than a DUI.

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Congress passed the Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act in 2010. The law noted that hybrid vehicles are very quiet, especially when driven below 18 miles per hour. Due to this,  Congress required the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to develop regulations for noise alerts on these silent hybrid vehicles by January 2014. This deadline was then extended to November 2015, and then to March 2016. Auto makers are expected to have 18 months to comply with the new mandates once they are issued.

Sadly, in the meantime, pedestrians remain at risk. Pedestrian accidents have actually increased since 2009, and the fact that people cannot hear hybrid and electric vehicles approaching the same way that they can hear traditional gas-powered vehicles places pedestrians at a greater risk of becoming involved in an accident.  

Drivers should always keep a close watch out for all pedestrians, especially those who may be blind, distracted or need extra time crossing the street.

If you have suffered harm from a pedestrian accident in Tampa Bay, you may have the right to recover for your past, current, and future medical expenses, lost income, out-of-pocket expense related to the accident and pain and suffering.

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A motorcyclist was killed in a crash in Clearwater on Friday morning.

According to reports, a 22-year-old was driving a motorcycle eastbound on Belleair Road at a high rate of speed east of Belcher Road when he collided with a 2001 Buick Century, driven by 78-year-old man, who was pulling out of a driveway.

The biker was ejected from the motorcycle, and died at the scene.

According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Transportation, there are more than 200 people who are killed every year in the United States and another 17,000 injured in backover accidents. Backover accidents happen when a driver is backing up their vehicle and hits an object, pedestrian, bicyclist, motorcyclist, etc. that they did not see, usually because of a blind zone in the vehicle. SUVs and trucks are notorious for having blind spots, and their increasing popularity has only resulted in more reports of backover fatalities. Trucks and SUVs are responsible for a whopping 60 percent of backover tragedies.

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A Seminole woman was killed Saturday evening when she was hit by an SUV while riding her bicycle.

The crash occurred just before 7 p.m. on the east side of the 8600 block of Seminole Boulevard.

The 68-year-old woman was riding her bicycle on the sidewalk when a 2003 Ford Expedition pulled out of the Florida Mobile Home trailer park, preparing to turn right, according to reports.

Deputies believe the driver of the Expedition did not see the woman and hit her.

The woman was taken to Largo Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead.

Neither alcohol nor speed appear to be factors in the crash, according to deputies.

The investigation is ongoing.

When in an accident with an automobile, bicycle riders are at an increased risk for serious injuries. Any motor vehicle can cause serious, catastrophic injuries to an unprotected bike rider.

Our Tampa Bay Auto Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton are dedicated to helping bicycle riders who have been injured as a result of a vehicle operator’s negligence.  Bicycle accidents most often occur due to:

  • Driver failing to stop for a bicycle rider at a crosswalk
  • Vehicle failing to stop at a stop sign
  • Distracted driver on the cell phone or texting while driving
  • Sideswiped by a vehicle making a turn at an intersection
  • A vehicle turning into a driveway
  • A vehicle backing out of a driveway
  • Being struck while riding on a sidewalk

Our Tampa Bay area personal injury lawyers at Whittel & Melton have extensive experience in representing bicycle accident victims. We are very familiar with the complicated laws that govern bicycle use in the state of Florida. We understand that many insurance companies are quick to place the blame on the the bicycle rider, which is why we fight aggressively to stand up for your rights.  

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If you are like most Americans, you will be celebrating Halloween this weekend. Halloween is quite a fun holiday, providing you with the opportunity to dress up in a unique costume and eat a lots of candy! Halloween is known by children for its trick or treating, and for good reason. This year alone, Americans are projected to spend $2.1 billion on Halloween candy!

Around 41 million trick or treaters between the ages of 4 and 15 are expected to be out on the streets this Halloween. And while Halloween is a spooky fun holiday, it is important to not forget the list of potential dangers that can arise. Serious injuries can occur, ranging from pedestrian accidents, dog bites and even slip and falls or trip and falls. The following safety tips can ensure that you and your family and friends stay safe this Halloween while out and about in the Tampa Bay area.

Tips for a Safe Halloween

  1. Carry a flashlight with you while stomping through the streets. A flashlight can warn motorists that you are on the road and help illuminate your walking path so that you can clearly see ahead and avoid a trip and fall accident.
  2. Put reflective tape on your children’s costumes, and even their candy bags, so that they can easily be seen at night. You want to make sure your children are as visible as possible when out trick or treating. Accidents usually occur when drivers cannot see children.
  3. Make sure your child can walk in his or her costume and that it is not too long. You may need to hem or trim the bottom of the costume to avoid any unnecessary falls.
  4. Never let your child go out trick or treating alone. Make sure your kids are in a group and escorted by a parent or guardian.
  5. Remind children to stay away from dark houses.
  6. Inspect all candy before you let your children dig in.

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A Bradenton man riding a scooter was killed Sunday night after being hit from behind by a SUV on State Road 70, according to reports.

The 41-year-old man was riding a scooter east on State Road 70 near the I-75 interchange around 7:20 p.m. when a Jeep Liberty changed lanes behind him and crashed into the scooter, the Florida Highway Patrol said.

The man was thrown from the scooter and transported to Lakewood Ranch Medical Center, where he later died.

The driver of the Jeep, an 18-year-old, was cited for careless driving, according to the FHP.

The most common scooter and moped injuries are fractures, broken bones, back and spine injuries, and head trauma. While some of these injuries can heal with time, others can have permanent, life-changing effects. In some tragic cases, scooter accidents can result in wrongful death. Scooter and moped riders should always wear helmets when operating their vehicles. However, even when riders use their safety equipment and drive defensively, they are still among the most vulnerable drivers on the road due to the lack of protection that these motor vehicles provide compared to passenger vehicles.

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A 13-year-old boy suffered minor injuries Tuesday morning after he was hit by a vehicle while riding his bike in Tampa.

According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, the crash occurred shortly after 8 a.m. at the intersection of West Waters Avenue and Riverwood Boulevard.

Deputies believe the boy was riding his bicycle when a vehicle at the intersection turned and struck him.

The boy received minor abrasions to his hands and was transported to St. Joseph’s Hospital to be checked out.

The driver was not cited.

A parent’s worst nightmare is seeing his or her child suffer an injury of any kind and deal with the pain as well as the healing process. Sadly, many children are the victims of other people’s negligence, which can result in serious harm. Even worse, sometimes another person’s carelessness or recklessness can lead to the accidental loss of a child. When this happens, the parents may have the right to bring a claim for wrongful death and seek compensation for the loss of their child.

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County commissioners are looking at the possibility of cracking down on golf carts on some roads in Manatee County.

More specifically, county commissioners are considering an ordinance to remove them from Whitefield Avenue in Sarasota, Tara Boulevard in East Bradenton and El Conquistador Parkway in West Bradenton. This decision will be discussed on Tuesday.

Currently all of these roads are designated for golf carts. If approved, this would change that.

If approved, the golf carts would not go away entirely. The county may consider designating sidewalks for the carts.

In addition to the golf carts, county commissioners will also be considering raising the speed limit on 12 county roads.

The changes are being considered as a way to improve travel times and relieve congestion.

The possible causes of golf cart accidents are very similar to the causes of other types of traffic crashes. Collisions may be caused by drunk driving, distracted driving, reckless driving, road rage, etc. In certain situations, drivers of regular street vehicles fail to recognize golf carts on the roadway and provide them with enough space, or there may be other scenarios in which golf cart drivers fail to abide by the regular rules of the road. Other causes of accidents may be caused by defects with golf carts, such as those resulting from manufacturing errors or poor maintenance.

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A Winter Haven man became the third person to die in a vehicle crash in Polk County over the weekend after a pickup truck turned in front of his motorcycle Saturday night, according to authorities.

The 56-year-old man and his 54-year-old wife were riding a Honda south on Spirit Lake Road around 7 p.m. approaching 2nd Street when the crash occurred.

According to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, a 27-year-old Winter Haven was driving a Dodge pickup truck south on Spirit Lake and turned left at 2nd Street and into the motorcycle’s path.

The motorcycle hit the truck, ejecting both riders. The pair were taken to Lakeland Regional Health, where the man later died. The wife was hospitalized in stable condition.

The truck driver and two children in the truck were wearing seat belts and were not injured.

Speed, impairment or distraction were not factors in the crash, according to deputies.

Earlier Saturday, another motorcycle crash claimed the life of a Davenport man.

Just after noon, the man was traveling east on County Road 547 near U.S. 27 when it struck a Ford Focus driven by a man who was leaving a convenience store parking lot. The biker was thrown from the motorcycle and died at the scene, the sheriff’s office said.

Saturday morning, a 47-year-old Plant City man was killed in a three-vehicle crash on County Line Road.

Around 7:30 a.m., the man’s Dodge Neon and a tractor-trailer driven by a 52-year-old Alabama man were traveling south, side-by-side, on County Line Road near Drane Field Road, the sheriff’s office said.

The Dodge drifted into the lane of the semi, struck the right front of the truck and shot into the northbound lanes. It then collided with a northbound Dodge Charger driven by a 36-year-old Mulberry man, deputies said.

When emergency personnel arrived on scene, the driver of the Dodge Neon did not have a pulse. He was taken to Lakeland Regional Health where he was pronounced dead, deputies said.

When a loved one is killed in an auto accident, the family has enormous grief to deal with as well as wrongful death insurance claims. Our Tampa Bay Wrongful Death Lawyers at Whittel & Melton understand that you need time to grieve without the added stress of dealing with insurance companies and others who want to settle your wrongful death claim as soon as possible.

While this is a difficult time for your family, make sure you take your time with wrongful death claim. You need to determine the full extent of your financial losses as well as understand the need for pain and suffering compensation. When there are dependents involved, such as children, a spouse, other family members, their needs should also be taken into account in a wrongful death settlement.

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