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Wrong-Way Driving

There is nothing more frightening than seeing a car barreling down the road in the wrong direction. Raymond Howard Jackson was the innocent victim of a driver who was going the wrong direction on a Florida roadway. That incident resulted in Mr. Jackson’s untimely death.  Although sometimes the consequences are less dire, wrong-way driving that impacts innocents must always be addressed with the aid of experienced attorneys.

Wrong way crashes (WWCs) are a serious problem in Florida, so much so that the causes and potential countermeasures have been thoroughly studied. Frequently, these crashes occur on one-way roads such as freeway ramps.

Alcohol Connection?

A compilation of 50 years of research reports that a significant number of these types of collisions are the result of drug and/or alcohol impairment; indeed, 50-70 percent of WWC collision reports cite alcohol as a contributing factor, with 80 percent of fatalities in these types of crashes involving alcohol.

Who are the Wrong-Way Drivers?

Another interesting factor connected to wrong-way driving is criminal status. Surprisingly, there is a correlation between past felonies, a high number of traffic tickets, and wrong-way driving. Drivers involved in these incidents also have a higher incidence of driving without a license.

Males are involved in wrong-way driving at double, and in some studies, triple the rate of females, and they are more likely to have been drinking than their female counterparts. And when females were involved in wrong-way crashes, they were found to be at fault only 10 percent of the time.

Additionally, older drivers, particularly those over 70, are involved in a disproportionate number of these collisions. These drivers were found to make driving errors correlated to declining cognitive abilities, resulting in errors that impacted safety. Furthermore, although these drivers were less likely to suffer alcohol or drug impairment, they did more frequently experience medicine reactions or medical conditions that impaired driving.

When Does Wrong Way Driving Occur?

According to crash reports and data collected from camera monitors, wrong-way collisions involving alcohol most often occur on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights between twelve and six a.m. When alcohol is not a factor, these types of incidents are more frequent during high-traffic periods of the day. Daytime crashes more commonly involve older drivers, compared to the higher incidents of younger drivers involved in the nighttime incidents.

Interventions That Might Impact the Problem

Simulator tests indicate two potential interventions that have the potential to reduce risks related to wrong-way driving as it relates to on- and off-ramps:

  • Larger, lower signs indicating one-way traffic;
  • More signs indicating one-way traffic.

In these studies, drivers of all ages experienced higher performance rates on simulator tests when additional Wrong Way and Do Not Enter signs were presented, with younger drivers experiencing slightly more benefit than their older counterparts.

When A Wrong-Way Driver Smashes into You

Whether the driver is young or old, male or female, alcohol-impaired or medically impaired, careless or cautious: driving on the wrong side of the road can have a devastating effect on you. If you are the victim of a wrong-way crash, your injuries are the fault of the wrong-way driver. Effective, aggressive legal representation from the Law Offices of Robert W. Elton can ensure you get the compensation package you deserve. Contact us today in Daytona and Ormond Beach for a confidential, no-cost consultation.

Resources:

miami.cbslocal.com/2012/08/27/names-released-of-two-killed-in-wrong-way-crash-on-turnpike/

fdot.gov/research/Completed_Proj/Summary_TE/FDOT-BDV30-977-10-rpt.pdf