As this area has grown in population, so has the infrastructure – namely roads – and so too have the amount of car crashes and injuries. While this is an obvious statement, the manner in which we’re crashing has morphed over the years. Many roads, like East Lake Road, Little Road, Belcher Road and CR 1 used to be small two lane roads with piddly 35 mile an hour speed limits.
Now, all of these roads are multi-laned, with a higher speed limit to reduce some of the volume of traffic from the dreaded US 19, which has always been a bit of a nightmare. Because of all this growth, bulging roads have been designed to accommodate traffic, resulting in the severity of personal injuries from car crashes, which have grown exponentially over the years.
There are various reasons for car accidents, such as inattention, DUIs, blown tires, the always-bad idea of texting and driving, but it generally comes down to one thing. Speed.
It is obvious that a car crash at 35 miles per hour is an entirely different event when it occurs at 55 or 65 miles per hour. One results in bent fenders and bruising. The other often results in totaled cars and required surgeries, broken bones with internal injuries and tragically, sometimes death.
Over the years, we have seen US 19 become a safer road, which is a very good thing. That’s not to say there aren’t any knuckleheads still crashing into us, but there are more traffic lights to slow us down, many medians are blocked preventing drivers from crossing 4 lanes into oncoming traffic, more “fly-overs” (previously known as, well….bridges) which prevents intersection accidents, etc.
However, we are seeing more car crashes on these parallel arteries as more and more people use them as an alternative to US19 and frankly, travel an inappropriate speed. While some of these roads used to be a respite to the Indy 500 aspect of US 19, (“Just let me get off 19 and I know I’ll get there alive!”), no more.
Short of driving weird serpentine routes through subdivisions and small community roads to get to your destination that eat up time and gas, we have to traverse these roads. As a personal injury attorney, my best advice is, slow down. Know your surroundings. Put the cell phone down. Don’t eat and drive. I’ve had more than a few cases where my client was rear ended by someone distracted by French fries.
While we represent clients from Sarasota to Brooksville and as far east as Brandon, the bulk of our new cases come from right here in north Pinellas and New Port Richey. I know these roads because I travel them. Not just because I’m a personal injury attorney. Be vigilant, be safe, but know that we are here for you if your luck runs out.