A 41-year-old St. Petersburg woman died  following a single-vehicle crash on Roosevelt Boulevard early on New Years Day January 1, 2016. According to the St. Petersburg Police Department, Anita Marie Sanchez was heading east on Roosevelt in a 2004 GMC Envoy around 4:30 a.m. As Ms. Sanchez approached the Interstate 275 overpass, she lost control of the vehicle and left the roadway with the Envoy crashing into a guardrail. St. Petersburg police said that Ms. Sanchez was not wearing a seatbelt and was therefore ejected from the vehicle. Ms. Sanchez was taken to Bayfront Health St. Petersburg, Florida where she later died from the injuries sustained in the crash.
The NHTSA 2012 Traffic Safety Facts also provides that in 2012 fatal crashes, 79 percent of passenger vehicle occupants who were totally ejected from vehicles were killed. Ejection from the vehicle is one of the most injurious events that can happen to a person in an accident. In passenger cars, 18 percent of fatally injured occupants were ejected (totally or partially) from the vehicle, while 34 percent of those killed in light trucks were ejected. The report further states that seat belts are effective in preventing total ejections. Lap/shoulder seat belts, when used, reduce the risk of fatal injury to front-seat passenger car occupants by 45 percent and the risk of moderate-to-critical injury by 50 percent. For light-truck occupants, seat belts reduce the risk of fatal injury by 60 percent and moderate-to-critical injury by 65 percent. In 2012 alone, seat belts saved an estimated 12,174 lives of passenger vehicle occupants.
Florida Safety Belt Rules
The Florida Safety Belt Law  is found at Title XXIII, Chapter 316.614 of the Florida Statutes and provides:
“Safety belt” means a seat belt assembly that meets the requirements established under Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 208, 49 C.F.R. s. 571.208.
(c) “Restrained by a safety belt” means being restricted by an appropriately adjusted safety belt which is properly fastened at all times when a motor vehicle is in motion.
(4) It is unlawful for any person:
(a) To operate a motor vehicle in this state unless each passenger and the operator of the vehicle under the age of 18 years are restrained by a safety belt or by a child restraint device pursuant to s. 316.613, if applicable; or
(b) To operate a motor vehicle in this state unless the person is restrained by a safety belt.
(5) It is unlawful for any person 18 years of age or older to be a passenger in the front seat of a motor vehicle unless such person is restrained by a safety belt when the vehicle is in motion.”
St. Petersburg Automobile Accident Lawyers
It is important for all drivers and passengers to use safety belts in order to remain safe, to reduce the risk of injury or death in a vehicle accident and to fully comply with the terms of the Florida Safety Belt Law. Even if you are wearing a safety belt, however, you may be involved in a vehicle accident and sustain injuries which can be serious and even causing permanent disabilities. If that occurs to yourself or someone you know, it is important to speak to a St. Petersburg Automobile Accident Attorney. Contact Dolman Law Group today at 727-222-6922 to schedule your free legal consultation with our firm and learn more about seeking monetary compensation for your losses through a personal injury claim.
Dolman Law Group
1663 1st Ave S.
St. Petersburg, FL 33712