“Everyone knows that car accidents can result in serious injuries and fatalities, but it might come as a surprise to many Floridians that they run the risk of drowning in a car crash,” said Glatthorn, a lawyer with 34 years’ experience.
Reporters reviewed federal crash data from 2008 to 2012 which showed 49 people drowned inside their vehicles in Florida during that time period. By comparison, Texas reported 18 drownings and Indiana reported 14 during the same time period.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study in 2011 found an even higher number of drownings. There were an average of 57 deaths each year between 2004 and 2007, according to the NHTSA. The article stated that the federal study reported higher numbers because researchers uncovered many vehicle drownings that law enforcement agencies had not recorded as drownings, among other factors.
The Tribune News Service found that the most drownings occur in South Florida. The NHTSA’s report finds that drownings in vehicles account for 2.1 percent of all Florida car crash fatalities, which is twice the national average.
An official with the Florida Department of Transportation in Tallahassee told reporters that car drowings occur so frequently because there are more miles of roads with water frontage than other state.
“As an attorney who has represented victims of car accidents and families who have lost loved ones, I am very familiar with the devastating impact of traffic accidents. That’s why I strongly encourage people to develop and maintain safe driving habits,” Glatthorn said. “Drowning is another potentially grave consequence of a car wreck in South Florida. In so many cases, car accidents are traced back to a driver’s careless or reckless action. Many drivers think they can talk or text on their cell phones and safely operate their cars. Some people get behind the wheel after having too much to drink. Others won’t think twice about speeding or driving recklessly. These types of negligent actions do have consequences. That’s why it’s so important to drive safely and to avoid dangerous behavior behind the wheel. ”