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Heavy Traffic? Don’t Add To The Problem – Be Part Of The Solution!

Drivers across the country have been watching with glee as the price of gas has dropped steadily.  In Florida, the current average price for regular unleaded gasoline is $2.139 per gallon, according to AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge Report. Just one year ago, the average was $3.377, so this 37% drop in price is definitely good news for drivers.

The bad news is, cheaper gas means more motorists are picking up their car keys instead of their bus pass or their bicycle helmet. If you’re a regular car-commuter in the Tampa Bay area, you already know that it is “one of the nation’s worst metropolitan areas when it comes to traffic,” according to a recent article in the Tampa Bay Times. With more drivers on the road, there’s sure to be an uptick in the number of accidents and more slowdowns caused by heavy traffic patterns. You can’t control the number of cars on the road, but you can make a difference by not adding to the problem!


Most drivers realize that when they are approached by emergency vehicles, they should slow down and pull over as far as possible in the roadway, allowing the police car or ambulance to proceed safely to the scene of the accident.  Fewer drivers realize that there are also laws in place regarding how to react when they approach an emergency vehicle working an accident scene at the side of the road. As part of their “Move Over, It’s the Law” campaign, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles posts these rules:

  • On a two-lane roadway, you are required to slow to a speed that is 20 miles per hour less than the posted speed limit.
  • If the speed limit is 20 miles per hour or less, you must slow down to five miles per hour.
  • If you are driving on an interstate or roadway with multiple lanes of travel in the same direction, and you approach an emergency or law enforcement vehicle parked along the roadway, you must vacate the lane closest to that vehicle as soon as it is safe to do so. If you are not able to safely move over, you must slow down to a speed of 20 MPH below the posted speed limit unless directed otherwise by a law enforcement officer.

Although an active accident investigation with police and emergency vehicles presents dictates that passing drivers should slow down for the safety of everyone on the scene, “rubbernecking” can contribute to the current traffic problem by causing ancillary accidents. Although it’s a natural curiosity to see what has happened, it is best to keep your eyes on the road and keep moving forward as safely as possible. Maintain your own focus so that you don’t rear-end someone else who has slowed down ahead of you, or cause a driver behind you to veer off the roadway to avoid rear-ending you!

You can also help to decrease congestion by allowing yourself plenty of time to get to your destination and using alternate routes. If you know that your regular route takes you through accident-prone intersections, do some research ahead of time to learn several different ways to your home or office.  If you see emergency vehicles working in the distance, it’s a great feeling to know you can turn off on a side-street and avoid the problem area altogether.


If you do find yourself injured in an accident caused by rubbernecking at the scene of an earlier incident, let the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA review the situation and provide you with a free, no-obligation and confidential consultation. Our attorneys understand the causes and consequences of such accidents and are committed to handling each claim with patience and zeal. Call Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA today at 727-451-6900.

Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765