Who Is Liable for A Car Accident Caused by Bad Weather in Florida?
Florida is known for sunny skies and warm weather, but storm clouds can form at a moment’s notice. Rain, high winds, and foggy conditions increase the chances of car accidents. In fact, the Department of Transportation reports that bad weather causes 21% of all collisions.
While it’s impossible to sue Mother Nature, drivers often wonder who’s responsible if a car crash results from poor weather conditions. At McCullough & Leboff, P.A., our car accident attorneys can answer any legal questions you might have and guide you through the claims process.
Bad Weather Conditions that Cause Florida Car Accidents
Rather than snow and ice, Floridians have to be aware of intense rainstorms, high winds, and dense fog. Those factors, combined with many Florida drivers already being distracted behind the wheel, it’s clear why there are so many accidents on the roads.
The period from May to October is known as the wet season in Florida, meaning there are strong thunderstorms most afternoons. September is historically the wettest month, with June following closely behind. In these harsh storms, drivers lose visibility and risk hydroplaning on wet roads. Drivers should leave extra space between vehicles, because it might take longer for cars to come to a complete stop.
High and strong winds can make for hazardous driving conditions. There’s more likely to be debris on the road, and it might even cause drivers to lose visibility. It’s also more challenging to control the vehicle, especially for lighter cars and commercial trucks.
Florida drivers only have to worry about fog for a few months out of the year, but it’s still important to remember that driving normal speeds when it’s foggy can cause collisions. When going through murky areas, you should never use the high beams, as they can reflect through the moisture in the air and decrease visibility. Also, make sure you begin braking well before you need to stop.
Who’s Liable for A Weather-Related Car Accident?
Many people say bad weather doesn’t cause car accidents; people who drive in bad weather cause accidents. When it comes down to it, you’ll have to show that the other person was being negligent and not acting in a reasonably safe manner to recover damages.
Reasonable Driving Practices in Bad Weather
What’s reasonable all depends on the weather condition. For example, it’s expected for drivers to go the speed limit on a dry day. Conversely, it’s more reasonable for drivers to go below the speed limit during a downpour. It’s also fair to expect other drivers to have their headlights on when it’s foggy.
Why Should I Hire a Florida Attorney?
Florida is a no-fault insurance state, so regardless of whether you caused the crash or were the victim, you’ll file a claim with your own insurance company. All Florida drivers must have at least $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP), and your insurer will cover 80% of your bills up to the PIP limit. After that, you’ll either have to pay the remaining amount out-of-pocket or hire a personal injury attorney to fight for you to receive the full coverage.
PIP will also only cover up to 60% of your lost wages, but an attorney can fight for you to receive the remaining 40%.
Contact a Skilled Florida Car Accident Attorney Today
If you or a loved one sustained injuries from an auto accident, reach out to the skilled car crash attorneys at McCullough & Leboff, P.A. Our lawyers are readily available to discuss your claim, and we devote time to ensuring you understand the legal process and our efforts to protect your rights.
From investigating your case to presenting evidence at trial, we are committed to bringing you the highest level of legal representation possible. Call us or complete a contact form to schedule a free consultation.