The coronavirus crisis has made a significant and ubiquitous impact on our lives. Due to the pandemic, many events and services are getting canceled across the nation. Many people are wondering how the lockdown will affect the car accident claims in Tampa going into the future. There is a lot of contradictory information being shared by government officials and news sources. Therefore, it is no surprise that several Americans are feeling conflicted and confused about life during the pandemic and after it. As far as car accident claims are concerned you need to talk to a car accident attorney.

Court Closure

From March, the courthouses in Florida have been restricting access and placing limitations on the hearings carried out in person. They have completely closed the doors for the general public until further notice. Every county will take their own decision about the particular efforts needed by the courts to counter the threat of COVID-19 exposure. The in-person hearings are expected to start in June 2020.

Car Accidents during the COVID-19 Pandemic

The local shelter-in-place orders in case of Florida might be expiring soon however, it doesn’t mean that the crisis is over. People are still well-advised to stay at home as much as possible for avoiding the possibility of spreading or contracting the COVID-19 virus. But, even during the lockdown, car accidents may occur. These accidents are stressful however if you have a plan of action ready for them, you can stay calm even during the worst-case scenarios. If you are involved in a car accident during the COVID-19 crisis, follow these easy steps,

1. Call the police.
2. Collect the contact information.
3. Take photographs of the related evidence.
4. Get medical attention as quickly as possible.
5. Call a car accident attorney before you get in touch with the insurance company.

Police

Although these steps remain the same even at normal times many of them are affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, the police in certain areas are trying to limit their responses only in the event of the more serious accidents. You must insist that the police arrive at the scene so that a police report may be filed. Even during the process after the accident try to maintain six feet distance between yourself and others.

Medical Aid

In case you have suffered just minor injuries it may be difficult to get a physician at the scene fast. The medical records of the injuries make a vital difference in the court case as they connect with the accident. Sooner you visit a doctor after the accident easier it is to establish that the accident was responsible for the injuries. Don’t wait for medical aid due to the fear of hospitals. Remember, medical care is necessary not only for your wellbeing but for the validity of the court case.

Legal Help

The COVID-19 pandemic has given everyone reasons to worry about along with a range of difficulties. However, car accidents have to be taken seriously. Even at the time of the pandemic you must try and seek justice if your car was wrecked due to the negligence of the other. If you put off the things it will make things significantly more difficult to prove your case.

You can get professional legal help from the car accident attorney available at the Rojas Law Group for car accidents in Tampa. They are working despite the pandemic and helping their clients get justice.

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Water makes up for a big portion in the Tampa Bay area of Florida, United States. This means you will find several bridges in the area while driving. Even though driving over these bridges is a terrific experience you will also note that there are many car accidents in Tampa recorded on the bridges due to the narrow bridge designs. There were around 19,000 accidents on the bridges and interstate highways in the year 2015 alone according to the government highway safety authorities. Let’s see some ways of avoiding car accidents in the Tampa Bay area.

1. Drive defensively as much as possible: Due to the narrow nature of the bridges, those car accidents in Tampa that are avoidable on the normal roads become possible on the bridges. Therefore it is significant to drive defensively as much as possible. Always intimate the car behind you while using the breaks. Try and maintain a strategic distance from the vehicle ahead of you. Always keep to the right allowing other cars to pass you from the left. You will take a big step toward avoiding car accidents in Tampa by driving defensively.

2. Keep away from the distractions: There is much potential distraction while driving a car such as chatting, text messaging, browsing and these are the main reason for the accidents in the U.S. these days. Avoid all these distractions and do yourself a favor. Focus on driving your car more. All other things can wait till you have reached the destination.

3. Apply the brakes slowly: Sometimes you may find yourself in situations where coming to a stop is just avoidable while driving your car. When this is about to take place try and apply the brakes gradually. If you are applying the brakes slowly you will not only reduce the wear and tear of the brake pads but will also intimate the car behind you that you are slowing down and possibly are coming to a halt. This is another good way of avoiding car accidents in Tampa.

4. Do not push yourself too much: If you are driving safely it means you are in a relaxed state of mind. For the car drivers that have been driving for a long time, they must find a place to take a nap if feeling tired. This short rest period allows you to continue safely on your journey. Try and keep alert as much as possible when you are driving the car. It is a good idea to pay for a night’s stay in a hotel than pay for car damages or property damages later.

5. Provide sufficient time to yourself to reach the destination: It is a good idea to spend some time at the airport before you have embarked on a flight than rushing to the boarding area to get there on time. There are likely to be many delays near the airport, due to the traffic, or construction around the airport. By the way, if you are going to an airport it is a good idea to get someone else to handle the driving.

By following these tips you can drive safely and avoid mishaps. Always keep in mind that it is better to be safe than sorry. Driving carefully will not only ensure that you are staying away from car accidents in the Tampa Bay area but it will also make sure that the lives of other drivers are safe. However, if you are involved in a car accident in the Tampa area and there is a chance that you will need professional help, get in touch with Rojas Law Group for a free consultation.

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Recently the Wall Street Journal ran an alarming headline stating that Pinellas County, Florida is the most dangerous place to ride a bike in America today. This is the area located right outside of the Tampa Bay Metro area. This is something that the Tampa Bay Times refutes though. What makes this so interesting is that both newspapers gathered their information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The difference lies in the fact that the Wall Street Journal gathered their information from a 10-year period while the Tampa Bay Times looked specifically at the past 5 years.

What Statistics Show

Statistics show that in 2016 Florida was the deadliest state for bicyclists. The fatality rate was 6.7 out of 1 million people which is more than half of the national average: 2.6 million. However, Pasco County had more deaths than Pinellas when looking at all the counties located around Tampa Bay. Their average was .77 per 100,000 people throughout the 5 years that were perused. During this same time these statistics were also discovered:

  • Hillsborough had .75 per 100,000 people
  • Pinellas had .71 per 100,000 people
  • Hernando had .46 per 100,000 people
  • Citrus had .43 per 100,000 people
  • Manatee 1 per 100,000 people
  • Sarasota 1 per 100,000 people

These are the 7 counties that the traffic safety administration includes in the Tampa Bay metro area. When you factor in all 7 counties, you see that Pinellas moves even further down on the list.

What This Data Means

Spokeswoman Kathryn Henry from the Tampa Bay Times clarified this information. In doing so she consulted with the agency’s data team. Together they formed the theory that Pinellas clearly doesn’t have the highest rate of fatalities caused by bicycle accidents. While the county did have a high rate of these fatalities in 2013, this isn’t the case now in 2019.

Steve Severinghaus from the Wall Street Journal replied to Henry’s statement by saying that his newspaper had considered over a decade’s worth of information when conducting their analysis. He said this data also included the most recent information that was presented by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. In conclusion Severinghaus stated that the paper was confident in the accuracy and quality of their reporting on this matter.

What the Wall Street Journal somehow managed to overlook was the fact that the Florida Department of Transportation saw 2011 as a turning point when it came to bicycle safety initiatives. It may be this fact that accounts for the difference between the 5 and 10 year analysis.

Conclusion

The number of fatalities caused by bicycle accidents has been increasing throughout the country as more people using bikes for transportation. According to the traffic safety administration, there were 840 deaths in the U.S. in 2016 alone – the highest rate since 1991. If you are a bike rider in this area who’s gotten into a bicycle accident, make sure you contact the Rojas Law Group. They’ve successfully defended many bikers over the years and look forward to helping you as well.

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