Cocoa Beach features six miles of ocean beaches with easy access from one end of the city to another. There are oceanfront parks, fantastic golf courses, plenty of unique dining and shopping experiences, and many adventures that draw a lot of tourists.
Our Cocoa Beach car accident lawyers know that during certain times of the year, such as when there is a space event at nearby Cape Canaveral or during Spring Break, the roads can fill up with travelers who are unfamiliar with the area. Also, both tourists and locals can be distracted by the sights and sounds, and some might even get behind the wheel while impaired by alcohol. These situations can lead to serious car accidents that cause severe inuries.
If you were in a car accident in Cocoa Beach or the surrounding area, one of the Cocoa Beach crash attorneys at Dolman Law Group, Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, can provide a free consultation at your convenience. We can explain the process of seeking compensation for the financial and psychological costs of your injury. We'll also share details about our firm, our passion for assisting injured people across both Florida Coasts, and how we can assist you with your claim.
Driver Negligence that Can Lead to a Cocoa Beach Accident
The most common cause of car accidents in Cocoa Beach is human error. Human errors usually result from carelessness or recklessness, also known as negligence.
Some hazardous areas in and around the city for motorists include:
- S.R. 520
Here is a look at some of the negligent driving practices that commonly cause car accidents in Cocoa Beach.
Speeding refers to exceeding the posted speed limit and driving too fast for weather and traffic conditions. It is a factor in around one-third of all motor vehicle accidents.
Some of the hazards created by traveling at an excessive speed include:
- A reduction in the time a driver has to notice a hazard on the roadway and respond to it by braking.
- An increase in the distance the vehicle will travel after the driver has braked, as the excess speed requires the brakes to work harder to pull the vehicle's weight to a complete stop.
- More difficulty for other drivers to judge a safe gap in traffic when entering a travel lane.
- A greater risk that the driver will lose control of their vehicle.
- Increased crash severity that makes the vehicle's safety features, such as seat belts, airbags, and the steel frame, less effective.
Distracted driving is another major hazard for travelers in and around Cocoa Beach.
The three types of driving distractions include:
- Manual distractions that cause the driver to take their hands from the wheel.
- Visual distractions that cause the driver to look away from the road.
- Cognitive distractions that cause the driver's focus to stray from the task of driving safely.
One of the most concerning types of driver distraction is texting and driving. In the time it takes a driver on I-95 to read or reply to a text, they will have traveled the distance of a football field without looking at the road—plenty of time for another vehicle to enter the travel lane or for traffic to unexpectedly slow down.
As a popular vacation destination, Cocoa Beach has no shortage of dining and drinking establishments that cater to visitors and residents alike as they unwind and enjoy time with friends. Alcohol-impaired driving is one of the top causes of traffic accidents, with more than a quarter of all fatal traffic accidents involving an impaired driver.
The legal impairment limit for most adults over 21 operating vehicles on Cocoa Beach roadways is 0.08 grams of alcohol per deciliter of blood. Most people reach this level of impairment by consuming around four drinks in an hour. However, alcohol affects people differently depending on weight, metabolism, and even how often they drink.
At the legal impairment limit, most drivers experience effects such as:
- Significant loss of muscle coordination
- Short-term memory loss and difficulty concentrating on driving
- Difficulty staying in a single lane of travel
- They are less likely to notice if a traffic light has changed or a pedestrian has entered the roadway.
- Difficulty braking or steering the vehicle.
- Difficulty making good driving decisions.
Failure to Yield
Failure to yield the right-of-way is one of the most common causes of accidents at intersections. This includes running red lights or stop signs, failing to judge a safe gap in traffic when turning on a solid green light, or even pulling or backing out of a private drive onto the roadway.
Tailgating refers to the risky driving practice of following another vehicle too closely. A driver can't stop instantly when there is a sudden hazard on the roadway. Also, the heavier the vehicle and the faster it is traveling when the brakes are applied, the longer the stopping distance required. Wet roads can also increase stopping distance. When one vehicle is following another too closely, the risk is high that they will be unable to stop in time to avoid colliding with the car in front of them if it should suddenly slow down or stop.
Lack of Experience
Approximately a thousand students attend Cocoa Beach Junior/Senior High School. Over the next few years, nearly all of these students will obtain their driver's licenses. Additionally, teens and young adults often choose Cocoa Beach as a vacation destination, with driving being part of the adventure. Motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for teens.
Young drivers have the highest risk of car accidents because:
- They are less experienced than other drivers. New drivers are still honing the skills needed to stay safe on roadways, including roadway surveillance, speed control, smooth lane changes, and how to respond in emergency driving situations.
- Teens are more likely to engage in risky driving behaviors or become distracted when other teens are in the vehicle.
- Teens require more sleep than adults and are at a higher risk of making errors during nighttime driving due to fatigue.
- Nighttime driving, in general, is more dangerous for young drivers because they are developing the skills for safe driving and must negotiate factors such as reduced visibility.
- While teens are less likely than adults to drive while impaired by alcohol, they have a higher risk of crashing.
Aggressive driving refers to a series of risky and deliberate driving behaviors that a driver often engages in to escape congestion on the roadways. These behaviors are often sparked by anger about other drivers' driving skills and behaviors.
Aggressive driving behaviors include:
- Improper passing, such as rapidly or frequently changing lanes to go around other traffic, often without a turn signal, or passing on the shoulder, median, or in areas where passing is prohibited.
- Running red lights or stop signs.
- Following other vehicles too closely forcing other drivers to speed up or change lanes.
- Attempting to block another vehicle from passing or turning.
- Speeding or racing other vehicles on the roadway.
According to a survey by the AAA Foundation, around 80 percent of drivers experience significant anger, aggression, or even rage when traveling on busy roadways.
Vehicle Maintenance Issues
Many drivers fail to regularly maintain their vehicle, instead choosing to drive a vehicle with unsafe tires or other issues that can result in a malfunction on the roadway. A tire blowout, for example, can cause a driver to quickly lose control and collide with other vehicles, as can a loss of the vehicle's brakes. Defective brakes are the most common maintenance issue leading to car accidents.
Other types of maintenance issues that can lead to car accidents include:
- Defective lights
- Steering and suspension issues
- Broken or missing mirrors
Types of Auto Wrecks Our Cocoa Beach Car Accident Lawyers Can Handle
Just as an accident can occur on the streets of Cocoa Beach in many ways, many types of accidents can occur. Here are some of the most common types of car accidents.
Rear-end collisions involve the front of one vehicle colliding with the rear of another vehicle. This is one of the most common accident types, accounting for around 29 percent of all accidents on U.S. roadways. Rear-end collisions are also the most common cause of whiplash, a type of injury involving damage to the neck's soft tissues and resulting from the sufferer's head snapping back and forth on the neck, similar to the cracking of a whip.
Broadside (T-Bone) Accidents
Broadside accidents—also known as T-bone accidents or side-angle crashes—occur when the front of one vehicle collides with the side of another. T-bone accidents most commonly occur in an intersection and are generally caused by one driver failing to yield the right-of-way to the drivers in other travel lanes.
Broadside collisions can seriously injure people due to the lack of crash protection in the doors of most vehicles. This is especially true if there is a big discrepancy between the vehicles involved in the accident.
Head-on collisions occur when the front of one vehicle collides with the front of another vehicle. This type of accident can result from wrong-way driving on a roadway or highway entrance or exit ramp. It can also occur due to a previous accident that pushes one vehicle into oncoming traffic. Also, improper passing on narrow roadways can lead to head-on collisions.
Head-on collisions are relatively rare but overrepresented in fatal crash statistics due to their increased crash severity.
Sideswipe accidents involve the side of one vehicle colliding with the side of another vehicle. Many sideswipes result from a driver failing to check their blind spot before changing lanes. A blind spot is an area around the vehicle that the driver cannot see by looking in their rear or side-view mirrors. Instead, they must look over their shoulder to determine if a lane is clear before merging into it. Another cause of sideswipes is a driver swerving into a different travel lane due to impairment, fatigue, or distraction.
Sideswipe accidents can be extremely dangerous as they pose a high risk of one or both drivers losing control of their vehicles due to the collision.
Vehicle rollovers occur when a vehicle tips over onto its side or roof, often when running off the roadway. Rollovers are often violent crashes with a high risk of injury or death, particularly for vehicle occupants not wearing their seat belts.
Most rollovers occur due to the vehicle's tires "tripping" on an object such as a median, another vehicle, a guardrail, or a roadway sign. While any vehicle can roll over in certain circumstances, rollovers are more common for vehicles with a higher center of gravity, such as commercial trucks, SUVs, pickups, and vans.
When hearing about single-car accidents, many people think about accidents in which a distracted or fatigued driver runs off the road without the involvement of any other roadway user. Other types include motorcycle, bicycle, or pedestrian accidents. Around 42 percent of vehicle occupant deaths are the result of single-car crashes.
Contact the Cocoa Beach Car Accident Lawyers at Dolman Law Group Today
If you were injured in a auto crash, let an experienced Cocoa Beach personal injury attorney from Dolman Law Group evaluate your case for free. Our car accident lawyers can provide answers to the questions you have about your specific case, as well as more information about the personalized and compassionate services we provide while we fight alongside you for the compensation you deserve.
With offices across both Florida coasts, you can easily reach our dedicated Cocoa Beach car accident lawyers at our local phone number, 321-456-9379, or you can write to us using our online contact page.
Cocoa Beach Office
1980 N Atlantic Ave, STE 218
Cocoa Beach, FL 32931
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