The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, or FLHSMV, releases an annual report of Traffic Crash Facts. The recent 2018 report provides valuable information about how many people were injured in car accidents for the year, injury severity, and contributing car crash factors.
Here, the car accident lawyers at Chanfrau & Chanfrau use reported crash data to consider how first driver actions affect injury levels in Florida. Drivers from Daytona Beach, FL, Palm Coast, FL, and surrounding areas can use this information to determine the types of actions they should be avoiding when they are on the road.
What Are First Driver Actions?
In their 2018 report, the FLHSMV goes over a number of “first driver actions,” and what degree of injury levels resulted from those maneuvers. But what exactly does first driver action mean?
Simply put, the “first driver action” is the first action a driver took that contributed to an accident. These can range from ignoring traffic signs and swerving to no contributing action at all. When a crash report is written in the state of Florida, up to four driver actions can be identified as contributing to any individual car crash.
Traffic Crash Facts categorizes injury data by the first driver action to be selected on each crash report.
Numbers Reported in the Traffic Crash Report
It is important to note that the number of injuries reported by the FLHSMV in their analysis of injury levels based on first driver actions are not an accurate representation of the total number of accident injuries for the year. Because numerous people can be injured in one accident, these numbers represent the highest degree of injury caused by each first driver action in the report.
Leading Causes of Fatal Injuries
Fatal injuries, or those which result in death, are the most severe type of car crash injury. Based on data presented by the FLHSMV, first driver actions that were a leading cause of fatal injuries in Florida include:
- Operating a motor vehicle in a careless or negligent manner (699 fatal injuries)
- Failing to yield the right of way (395 fatal injuries)
- Other contributing actions (334 fatal injuries)
- Running off the roadway (271 fatal injuries)
- Failing to keep in proper lane (248 fatal injuries)
Leading Causes of Incapacitating Injuries
Incapacitating injuries are severe injuries that permanently or temporarily disable a person. These types of injuries, which include broken bones, traumatic head, neck, or back injuries, and severed limbs, often require immediate medical attention. First driver actions that were a leading cause of incapacitating injuries in 2018 include:
- Operating a motor vehicle in a careless or negligent manner (5,280 incapacitating injuries)
- Failing to yield the right of way (3,028 incapacitating injuries)
- Other contributing actions (1,355 incapacitating injuries)
- Failing to keep in proper lane (768 incapacitating injuries)
- Running a red light (664 incapacitating injuries)
Leading Causes of Non-Incapacitating Injuries
Non-incapacitating injuries are visible injuries that do not cause a significant disability. Non-incapacitating injuries that may be suffered after a car accident include a sprain or limp, cuts and contusions, and burns. First driver actions that led to the highest number of non-incapacitating injuries in 2018 were:
- Operating a motor vehicle in a careless or negligent manner (19,025 non-incapacitating injuries)
- Failing to yield the right of way (11,109 non-incapacitating injuries)
- Other contributing actions (4,501 non-incapacitating injuries)
- Following too closely (2,946 non-incapacitating injuries)
- Running a red light (2,451 non-incapacitating injuries)
Leading Causes of Possible Injuries
Car accident injuries are defined as possible if an accident victim complains of pain or other non-visible injuries. First driver actions that were the greatest contributors to possible injuries in 2018 were:
- Operating a motor vehicle in a careless or negligent manner (38,191 possible injuries)
- Failing to yield the right of way (17,078 possible injuries)
- Following too closely (9,649 possible injuries)
- Other contributing actions (8,581 possible injuries)
- Running a red light (3,536 possible injuries)
When a driver’s actions result in car accident injuries, they should be held accountable for resulting damages. To find out how the car accident lawyers at Chanfrau & Chanfrau can help you hold liable drivers responsible for your losses, contact us online at your earliest convenience or call (386) 258-7313.