Earlier this month, a 51-year old man was returning home from a business trip when he was struck near Terminal H at Miami International Airport. The man, who was attempting to cross the street just outside the terminal, was struck by a Chevy SUV. Emergency workers arrived at the scene and tried unsuccessfully to revive the victim of the accident.
Police are currently investigating whether the driver of the SUV was at fault for the pedestrian’s death. As WSVN.com reports, police need to know more to determine whether the driver is at fault, or whether it was an unavoidable accident. As of right now, the driver is not facing any criminal charges for her involvement in the accident.
A witness to the accident reports that the driver of the SUV was visibly shaken up after the accident. Officers interviewed her for over an hour before allowing her to drive herself home.
The Importance of Paying Attention While Driving
This tragic accident brings an important issue to the forefront; distracted driving. Regardless of whether the driver of the SUV will be held criminally responsible, there is another question as to whether she was negligent in failing to see the man crossing the street, or failed to yield to him if he was in a crosswalk.
There have been several laws passed recently, across the country, aimed at increasing drivers’ awareness while behind the wheel. One such law was passed earlier this year in Florida, which banned texting while driving. In fact, many states have recently passed these laws. In Florida, it is a secondary offense to text while driving. This means that an officer cannot pull someone over for texting, but can issue a citation if he has another reason to pull over the driver.
In addition to the criminal consequences, evidence that a driver is texting while driving is strong evidence that the driver is being negligent. Negligence is the crux in a civil lawsuit for damages based on an auto accident. If the victim of the accident can show that the driver was negligent, and that the driver’s negligence caused the victim’s injuries, there is a good chance that the victim will be able to recover compensatory (and perhaps even punitive) damages. While texting while driving is one way a driver can be negligent, there are countless other ways; including applying make-up, shaving, talking on the phone, talking to a passenger, etc. These might not be illegal, but can still factor into a negligence analysis.
Involved in an Auto Accident?
If you or a loved one has been involved in an auto accident in Southern Florida, you should retain the services of an experienced auto accident attorney. As a victim, you have certain rights that, if go unexercised, might be permanently lost. So it is best to consult with an experienced Fort Lauderdale accident attorney immediately to ensure that your rights are preserved.
Here is what we do:
- Motorcycle accidents
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- Pedestrian accidents
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- Failure to yield accidents
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Understand your legal rights when you are involved in a car accident. Schedule an appointment or contact us at 954-961-5100 for more information or to discuss your free consultation. We speak English and Spanish.