Southwest Florida has seen an increase in drunk-driving, wrong-way collisions in the last few months.
- Two people received minor injuries in a wrong-way accident in Collier County on Sunday, May 26, 2019. The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) reported that alcohol played a role in the crash.
- A potential tragedy was averted on Friday, May 17, 2019 when an FHP officer arrested a 57 year-old man who was traveling southbound in the northbound lanes of US41 in Fort Myers. The FHP officer was traveling in the northbound lane at the time and was able to stop and arrest the inebriated driver before an accident occurred.
- On April 30, 2019, the Fort Myers News-Press reported that two men died in a crash caused by a wrong-way drunk driver. According to the Cape Coral police, the drunk driver was headed east in the westbound lane of the 1600 block of Southwest Pine Road around 10:20 p.m. when the accident occurred.
Experts say that drunk drivers have a lessened sense of spatial awareness or direction. This causes them to commonly miss turns, turn the wrong way on one-way streets, or enter the highway going in the wrong direction.
Authorities are actively working on technology, road design and signage to decrease the number of wrong-way collisions in Florida. The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) installed a wrong-way driver detection system on the Howard Frankland Bridge in Tampa following two crashes in just two weeks time in the fall of 2018. The system relies on a series of six monitored cameras, instead of solely relying on 911 callers to track wrong-way drivers. The Tampa Bay area is the first area to test the new technology.
The injuries suffered in wrong-way collisions can be particularly debilitating. They range from traumatic brain injuries, spinal damage, paralysis, facial lacerations, and/or broken bones. Those injured face potential life-long pain and suffering, along with increased medical bills and the loss of income.
Drunk-driving accidents often produce lasting memories for victims. A drunk-driving head-on collision victim describes the accident she was in for Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD):
“Hello! I am a victim survivor. When I was 6 years old I survived a drunk-driving crash. I was riding with my father and my younger brother when we were hit head on by a drunk driver. I received a severe head injury and my father received multiple injuries. My father's girlfriend, who was in the passenger seat, received head injuries after hitting the front window. The drunk driver died from his injuries in the crash. I am now a volunteer speaker for MADD.” Danielle B.
“Drivers assume a ‘duty of care’ legal obligation when they receive their drivers’ licenses. This duty requires them to watch out for the safety of others when they are driving. Should they fail to do so, the injured can be entitled to damages, including payments for past, present and future medical expenses, loss of past and future wages, loss of consortium, pain and suffering and wrongful death damages,” said Fort Myers DUI Accident Attorney Randall Spivey of Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.
Fort Myers DUI Accident Attorney, Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one (1%) percent of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact the Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at 239.337.7483 or toll free at 1.888.477.4839,or by email to Randall@SpiveyLaw.com. Visit SpiveyLaw.com for more information. You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.in Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and in Collier County 239.793.7748.