25Jan 2018

First Responder Safety

Originating in South Carolina, the Move Over Law is designed to protect first responders from being injured or killed while performing their job duties. The law currently applies in all 50 states as well as Washington D.C., and in general the law states vehicles approaching an emergency vehicle should change lanes and travel in the lanes away from the emergency vehicle(s). If drivers are not able to change lanes they should slow to a speed where they can safely pass the emergency vehicles.

Various studies have proven that the American public is largely unaware of the laws pertaining to first responder safety. Over 2/3 of Americans are uninformed of the “Move Over” laws. According to the Department of Transportation, in 2015, 52 law enforcement were killed in traffic-related incidents with 11 of the officers being struck and killed outside their own vehicle. Traffic-related incidents are the number one cause of death among on duty police officers.

The legal penalties for not moving over for first responders also vary from state to state. Fines and jail are among the penalties. Besides being the law however, it is the right thing to do and moving over can be the difference in life and death for first responders. Move Over Laws call attention to the need to protect the safety of the first responders who place themselves at a high risk to protect motorists and keep our roads safe.

If you or someone you know has been involved in an accident due to another driver’s negligence in an area where first responders are present it is important to seek qualified legal counsel.

Who to Call

The attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice, and Purtz have over 50 years experience in personal injury law. Our 6 offices located in Southwest Florida are conveniently located in Fort Myers (2 offices), Cape Coral, Naples, Lehigh Acres, and Port Charlotte. Call us today to schedule a free consultation.

25Jan 2018

Nighttime Driving

The National Safety Council has found that drivers are three times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash at night. Nighttime driving presents additional challenges to drivers everywhere, and each year on November 6th Daylight savings comes to an end, shortening our time with daylight. Darkness, compromised vision, fatigue, rush hour, and impaired drivers all contribute to the extra difficulties of nighttime driving.

Darkness

· Keep your headlights clean, bright, and aimed correctly

· Dim your dash and avoid looking directly at oncoming traffic

· Try anti-glare glasses if necessary; get regular eye checkups

· Keep windshield clean from dust, debris, and streaks

Compromised Vision

· Older drivers have more difficulty seeing at night

· The American Optometric Association (AOA) advises older drivers get regular vision exams, drive slower, take a refresher driving course, check for prescription drug affects and limit nighttime driving as much as possible

Fatigue

· Annually, 6,400 fatalities and 50,000 injuries occur from sleep-deprived drivers (National Sleep Foundation

· Getting a good night’s sleep, carpooling, taking driving breaks, and taking a nap if necessary are recommended tips avoiding driving fatigue

Rush Hour

· Winter darkness, increased traffic, and eager drivers make rush hour especially risky

· Drivers should stay calm, drive slowly, avoid tailgating, and eliminate distractions

Impaired Drivers

· Almost 30 people per day die from impaired driving (CDC)

· Never drive if you’ve been drinking and don’t let others drink and drive

Driving at night can be extremely dangerous even while driving safely. 50% of traffic deaths happen at night and thousands more suffer injuries. If you or someone you know has been involved in a nighttime car accident due to another driver’s negligence it is important you know who to call.

Who to Call

The attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice, and Purtz have over 50 years experience in personal injury law. Our 6 offices located in Southwest Florida are conveniently located in Fort Myers (2 offices), Cape Coral, Naples, Lehigh Acres, and Port Charlotte. Call us today to schedule a free consultation.

18Jan 2018

Driving with Children

Driving with children can be a difficult task. In addition to regular parenting duties, drivers must also worry about the roadways, distractions and car safety. Consumer Reports has identified 6 tips for driving with children in the car.

1. Buckle Up – Half of teenagers who died in car accidents weren’t wearing a seat belt. Seat belts have shown to have saved over 300,000 lives over the last 50 years.

2. Know their place – Children under 12 years of age should always ride in the backseat. Additionally, small children should be secured in an approved child seat.

3. Secure Gear – Any objects in the car can become projectiles in the event of an accident or harsh breaking. All object should be secure, heavy objects should be on the floor, and children should be buckled up.

4. Use the Proper Car Seat – More often than not car seats are improperly installed. A local car seat technician can take a look if you are unsure.

5. Don’t Text and Drive – Not only is texting and driving unsafe for everyone on the roads, it will teach your children bad habits.

6. Never Leave Children Unattended – Children can suffer a heatstroke in a hot car. Additionally, children should not play around cars because drivers can suddenly back up and strike a child.

Driving or travelling with children presents additional risks, however the above tips will help increase your odds of driving safely with children. Accidents happen every day however and it is important to know who to call in the event that you and your family are involved in a car accident due to another driver’s negligence.

Who to Call

The attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice, and Purtz have over 50 years experience in personal injury law. Our 6 offices located in Southwest Florida are conveniently located in Fort Myers (2 offices), Cape Coral, Naples, Lehigh Acres, and Port Charlotte. Call us today to schedule a free consultation.

18Jan 2018

Driving in Storms

Southwest Florida has a tropical savanna climate with short, warm winners, and lengthy hot, humid summers. Because of the heat and humidity Southwest Florida is known to produce frequent storms, waterspouts, and even hurricanes. Driving in storms is sometimes unavoidable, therefore it is imperative drivers know and understand the additional risks and safety measures of driving in heavy winds or rain.

Wind

While winds may not seem like a major concern on the roads, a strong gust of wind should not be taken lightly. The following tips will help drivers manage the additional risks strong winds bring.

· Anticipate Gusts – Be informed on the weather forecast if high winds are possible. Also, be aware of areas prone to high wind such as open areas, overpasses, tunnels and mountainous areas.

· Be alert to large vehicles – Larger vehicles such as tractor trailers and rvs can swerve or veer off course due to strong wind gusts.

· Keep a firm grip on the steering wheel – Larger vehicles will be blown off course more easily however in high winds all drivers should have a firm grip on the steering wheel.

Rain

Rainstorms are an additional danger of the road because visibility is reduced and hydroplaning can occur. To help increase your safety in the rain drivers should follow the following tips.

· Take your time – Driving slowly reduces the risks of hydroplaning. Drivers should also be aware that when rain first begins it is extra slippery from the oils on the road.

· Turn your lights on – Florida’s laws require drivers have their headlights on when it’s raining.

· Give other vehicles more space – This will allow you more time to stop and more time for those behind you to stop.

While driving in high winds and rain present additional challenges on the roads, the safety tips above will help ensure your trip is as safe possible. Accidents do happen however. If you or someone you know has been involved in a car accident due to another driver’s negligence it is important to know who to call.

Who to Call

The attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice, and Purtz have over 50 years experience in personal injury law. Our 6 offices located in Southwest Florida are conveniently located in Fort

Myers (2 offices), Cape Coral, Naples, Lehigh Acres, and Port Charlotte. Call us today to schedule a free consultation.