Florida Car Accidents On The Rise Due To Snowbird Season
Florida is one of those places that has gorgeous weather all year long. Even around Christmas, when people in other states are building snowmen, the weather in Florida still hovers around the 70s and can even warrant a trip to the beach.
Because of this warm weather, many people flock to the Sunshine State to flee their bitter-cold home states. These people are called snowbirds. Snowbirds tend to flock to Florida around October and stay until April, when temperatures in their home states start to rise.
So snowbirds stay in Florida roughly six months out of the year. While Florida welcomes these snowbirds, the problem is that these temporary residents often cause traffic problems. Snowbirds tend to be retired folks in their late 60s, 70s, and beyond, so many are unfamiliar with Florida’s traffic laws. Combine that with the decreased vision, hearing, and reflexes that come with old age and you get a recipe for disaster. This is especially true considering that thousands of these drivers are in small concentration in South Florida.
Reasons for the Increase in Florida Accidents
Snowbirds are less familiar with the roads, plus the increase in traffic leads to more accidents during the winter months. Another thing to consider is that snowbirds tend to be older than the full-time population. Here are some reasons why senior citizens are more likely to cause car accidents:
- Decreased reflexes. Driving often requires quick maneuvers to avoid a crash. Older drivers have slower reflexes, so they are not as able to avoid accidents.
- Vision problems. Driving requires good eyesight to see signs, cars, and other hazards up ahead. Senior citizens are more prone to vision problems, which can make crashes more likely to occur.
- Senior citizens may have brain issues such as dementia. They may not have a good sense of direction and may forget where they are going. They may even mistake the brake for the accelerator.
- Medical issues. Older drivers are more likely to have medical problems while driving. They could experience strokes, heart attacks, and other issues that may cause them to crash.
- Making unsafe lane changes. Elderly drivers may fail to use their mirrors or look over their shoulder before changing lanes.
- Pulling out into traffic. Many older drivers have problems estimating how much space they have between vehicles. Because of this, they are likely to cause accidents by pulling out in front of traffic when it is unsafe.
- Failing to yield the right of way. Elderly drivers may forget driving rules. Due to vision problems, they may also fail to see and yield to bikes, pedestrians, and other vehicles.
Contact Us Today
It’s important to be vigilant when driving this time of year. Even though Florida does not get the ice and snow that other states do, driving conditions can still be dangerous due to snowbirds.
If you are involved in a crash, the Kissimmee auto accident lawyers at Draper Law Office can assist you. Rest assured that you will get good advice and high-quality representation. To schedule a free consultation, fill out the online form or call our office at (407) 743-6628.