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According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a sideswipe accident is any accident that occurs from one of two vehicles traveling on a parallel path encroaching on the other. This accident occurs when at least one vehicle is struck on its side.

If you have been injured in a sideswipe accident, contact a Florida car accident lawyer for assistance today.

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Steps to Follow After a Florida  Intersection Collision

Car accidents can be extremely frightening. Your mind is reeling, yet you have to take the next steps. In the haze of your panic, you may forget what to do after an intersection collision.

The fog after a car accident often leads to individuals making the following mistakes:

  • Not calling the police. Accidents that go undocumented are extremely difficult to file claims for. The insurance companies often won’t believe that they have occurred. Calling the police to the scene allows them to direct traffic safely, file a report, and attend to victims on site.
  • Telling the police you have no injuries. Do not tell the police that you “are fine” or have no injuries if you have not yet been examined by a doctor. This could refute your later claims.
  • Not photographing the scene. Victims often forget to take photos of the damage. They collect the other driver’s information then leave the scene. Support your case by taking pictures of the scene and the damage.
  • Avoiding medical treatment. People often wait to get medical treatment for days or weeks after a car accident. Any delay in visiting a doctor can be interpreted by insurance companies as a way to de-value your claim.
  • Not seeing the right kind of doctor. Some doctors do not deal with accident cases because they know that it can take a while to collect money from the insurance company. Emergency rooms are equipped to handle accident victims.
  • Not using PIP car insurance benefits to pay for your medical bills. Florida car insurance requires individuals to have personal injury coverage under a basic plan. That means that you can use this insurance to cover your medical treatment up to the limit of your coverage. You should use this instead of your health insurance as primary coverage after an accident.
  • Not keeping a file of your evidence. Losing evidence will devalue your case. Keep a folder with all of the evidence.
  • Signing a release without speaking to an attorney. Do not sign anything without your attorney’s say-so! This can destroy your ability to make a claim.
  • Trying to settle your case yourself. Hiring an expert Florida intersection accident lawyer can increase your compensation by 300% and ease your stress.

Are intersection accidents common in Florida?

Unfortunately, intersection accidents are common in Florida. In Miami, intersections are the most common location for serious car accidents. Most of these accidents occur due to individuals failing to stop at red lights.

Common Causes of Intersection Collisions

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that 96% of intersection accidents are due to driver error. This means that these types of accidents are mostly preventable with safe driving techniques.

In Florida, intersection accidents commonly occurred due to:

  • Distracting driving
  • Turning with an obstructed view
  • Failing to yield right of way
  • Illegal maneuver
  • Disregarding traffic signals
  • Misjudgment of another car’s speed, often in conjunction with tailgating
  • False assumption of other driver’s action

Determining Fault in an Intersection Accident

Although one individual may have violated a traffic law, causing an intersection collision, you can still be found at fault for the accident. This is because Florida has a comparative negligence system, where fault is allocated in percentages. Although one party may have failed to follow Florida’s red-light law, your distraction from texting while driving could also be culpable. If you had been alert, you may have been able to avoid the collision.

This is why determining fault is so complex in Florida. A Florida intersection accident lawyer can represent your claim and help prevent liability from being shifted onto you.

Damages to Include in an Intersection Accident Lawsuit

Victims of an intersection accident in Florida can seek damages to help them recover financially and emotionally. There are three types of damages that they can seek: economic, non-economic, and punitive.

Economic damages cover any expenses that the victim had to pay for which they have a receipt. These include medical expenses, ongoing medical costs, lost wages, property damage, and lost earning potential.

Non-economic damages are typically higher amounts than economic damages. These cover other damages that the victim suffered, typically without a receipt attached. That includes pain and suffering, loss of limbs, loss of companionship, anguish, embarrassment, and scarring.

Punitive damages can only be sought if the defendant was criminally negligent. For example, if they were drunk driving, the court may impose punitive damages to discourage them and others from continuing to engage in this behavior. The amount of the punitive damages is reflective of their criminality.

If you are unsure what type of damages your Florida intersection accident could collect, contact an expert lawyer at Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath for assistance.

Statute of Limitations for Florida

The statute of limitations for car accident cases in Florida is four years from the date of the accident. This includes intersection accidents. You must collect your evidence and file a claim within this period to be heard by the court.

Common Injuries from Intersection Accidents

Intersection accident injuries vary based on whether you are in a vehicle, a pedestrian, or a cyclist. You are more likely to be injured as a pedestrian or a cyclist in a serious manner, as you do not have the protection of the steel frame of a car.

Common intersection accident injuries include:

  • Whiplash
  • Soft tissue damage
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Traumatic brain injury, including concussions
  • Paralysis
  • Fractures
  • Contusions
  • Internal organ injuries

Contact a Florida Intersection Collision Lawyer Today

If you or a loved one have been injured in a Florida intersection accident, call Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath today. We believe in safer roads for everyone, starting with victims of car accidents.

Whether you were driving, cycling, or walking through an intersection when your accident occurred, our expert Florida lawyers can handle your case.

Call us for a free consultation today.