Two people were killed on February 12, 2016, in a wrong-way crash on Interstate 275 in downtown Tampa. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, a man driving northbound in the southbound lanes of the I-275 Ashley Drive ramp collided with a vehicle just after 5:30 a.m. The crash killed a man in each vehicle. Troopers said the wrong-way vehicle may have entered the interstate at Howard Avenue before crashing near Ashley Drive.
Causes of Florida Wrong-Way Crashes
In recent weeks, there have been several wrong-way collisions that caused Florida fatalities and injury including one on Christmas Eve where a Largo driver killed three people in a wrong-way collision in Seminole. The National Transportation Safety Board recently released a special investigative report on wrong-way driving. According to the report, alcohol and drug use are main contributing factors to wrong-way driving accidents. The report further provides that more than half, and as many as one-third of wrong-way accidents involved drivers impaired by drugs or alcohol. Older drivers were also found to be more likely to be involved in wrong-way driving collisions with drivers over 70 years of age more likely to be involved in wrong-way accidents than right-way fatal driving collisions. There are many possible causes of wrong-way driving including:
• Distracted drivers. When drivers are too busy texting and driving, eating, or paying attention to passengers in the vehicle, they may enter a street or roadway traveling in the wrong direction.
• Drowsy drivers. When drivers are extremely tired they can fail to notice directional signs or which way cars are traveling on the road. In many instances, drivers fall asleep at the wheel leading to wrong-way driving.
• Elderly drivers. Some older drivers may have poor eyesight, which can cause them to misread road signs or to even enter a ramp in the wrong direction.
• Intoxicated drivers. NTSB reports provide 60 percent of fatal crashes involve drivers impaired by alcohol
• Medical emergency. Sometimes drivers have heart attacks, seizures, or other medical issues that cause them to drive erratically or pass out at the wheel, which can lead to wrong-way collisions.
Injuries from St. Petersburg Wrong-Way Collisions
A wrong-way collision oftentimes involves the front end of a vehicle coming into contact with the front end of another vehicle. The abrupt nature of the collision, with both vehicles traveling at about the same speed creates the high fatality rate as well as extremely serious injuries:
• Whiplash: Caused by the head and neck continuing to move forward even after the vehicles have collided, then whipping back, straining the ligaments and muscles.
• Spinal Cord Injuries: The force of a head-on collision may travel up the spine and cause injuries, such as a herniated disc or nerve damage. Victims can be paralyzed depending on the severity of the crash.
• Chest Injury: An individual’s ribcage and chest can be injured by the force of the seatbelt, the body slamming into the steering wheel, the force of the airbag or other trauma.
St. Petersburg Automobile Accident Lawyers
It is important for all Florida drivers to refrain from driving if they are overly tired or intoxicated to avoid a wrong-way collision. If you someone you know has been injured or killed as a result of a driver who was going the wrong way on the road, 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