Articles Posted in Truck Accident


A fatal accident temporarily shut down the intersection of Country Club Boulevard and US 41 early Friday morning.

The accident occurred around 6 a.m.

Troopers believe a Honda Accord was stopped at a stop sign on Country Club Blvd. and pulled out into the path of a Chevy pickup truck that was traveling southbound on US 41.

The driver of the Honda, a 63-year-old woman, was killed in the collision. Her passenger, a 64-year-old woman, received serious injuries.

The driver of the truck, a 27-year-old man, also received serious injuries.

A car crash can have a serious effect on all aspects of your life. Many times these accidents cause victims to suffer significant injuries that leave them unable to work. If you were seriously harmed, you could require extensive surgeries or other costly treatments for your injuries. While the medical bills pile up, your other bills could be falling behind because you can’t earn the money that you could before the accident. Our Citrus County Auto Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton understand the stress and frustrations that build up following a car crash.  

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Thanksgiving is a very happy holiday for most, but on the flip side – it is also one of the deadliest. Across the United States, the fatal traffic accident death rate increases each year over the four-day holiday weekend.

According to the NHTSA, almost half of the traffic fatalities that happen on Thanksgiving involve alcohol. In 2012, there were reportedly 764 fatalities. Around 40 percent of passengers killed during the Thanksgiving holiday were involved in collisions with drunk drivers. Another 60 percent of passengers were not wearing their seat belts. There were another 50,000 non-fatal car crashes over the holiday as well.

AAA has estimated that 46.9 million Americans will travel fifty or more miles from their home for this 2016 holiday – Wednesday 23-Sunday 29. This is a 0.6 percent increase of travelers compared to last year.

The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is viewed as the worst day to travel. Wherever you are are heading to this Thanksgiving, our Citrus County Auto Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton recommend leaving early in the morning to avoid any high traffic areas. We urge you to drive safe, and plan ahead for your Thanksgiving travels.

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According to new data recently released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, traffic fatalities increased by 7.2 percent in 2015 compared to 2014. Sadly, 35,200 people died last year in motor vehicle related deaths.

The federal agency breaks the country up into 10 different regions for the purposes of analyzing data. Reports from 2015 show that Florida had a total of 2,494 traffic deaths in 2015 .

Every type of motor vehicle accident fatality saw a surge, including:

  • Truck accident fatalities – 4% increase
  • Rollover accident fatalities – 5% increase
  • Driver accident fatalities – 6% increase
  • Passenger accident fatalities – 7% increase
  • Motorcycle accident fatalities – 9% increase
  • Fatal crashes involving young drivers between the ages of 15 and 20 years of age – 10% increase
  • Pedestrian accident fatalities – 10% increase
  • Bicycle accident fatalities – 13% increase

The NHTSA believes the main cause this rise in accidents is due to human error or choice, a factor found in a staggering 94 percent of the crashes.

The agency is taken a serious stance on finding new ways to help combat against distracted driving, drowsy driving, drunk and drugged driving, failure to use seat belts, speeding, and safety protections for cyclists and pedestrians.

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Labor Day weekend is next week! This is the official mark that the end of summer is near. Most Americans have a three-day weekend to celebrate how hard they work the rest of the year, which is a great break from the usual 5 day work week. With more time off, comes more vacations. Many people plan short trips, outings, and/or parties to ring in the holiday with their families and friends. As we know, with food, fun, friends and family comes the risk of accidents and injuries over the upcoming LDW.

Drunk drivers increase over holiday weekends, so it is important to be aware of this so that you can work to prevent injuries whenever possible. If you are injured or someone you love is killed by a drunk driver, you should discuss your legal options with our Citrus County Auto Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton as soon as possible following the accident.

Holidays are known for an increase in drunk drivers on the roadways and the accidents that result from intoxicated drivers can deliver catastrophic injuries and wrongful death. Holiday gatherings usually involve alcohol and, during long holiday weekends like Labor Day, many people day drink and continue the party into the evening hours. No matter what you are doing, you should never get behind the wheel of a car after having too much to drink. Sadly, not every driver makes the responsible decision, which is why drunk driving accidents and injuries happen.

The increased risks for drunk driving are recognized by government agencies and law enforcement, which is why they will ramp up their efforts to deter and catch drunk drivers this LDW. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’ campaign “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” is in full effect through September 5th this year, spreading safety awareness and increasing law enforcement presence to try to prevent drunk drivers. These efforts cannot prevent all drunk driving, so please be aware of this as you are out and about during LDW.

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Memorial Day weekend is here and this marks the unofficial start of  summer! The three-day weekend is generally filled with family activities, parties with friends and, of course, road trips! Lots of these events involve alcohol, and with a high number of drivers on the roadway this weekend, getting behind the wheel after drinking can have devastating consequences.

The risk of being involved in a car accident increases significantly around holidays. The National Safety Council reports that there has been an 11.5 percent average increase in fatal traffic accidents during the Memorial Day weekend over the past six years, compared to other summer weekends. According to the NSC, there could be more than 400 car accident fatalities and another 43,500 injuries that require medical attention this weekend. In 2010, there were 397 deaths over Memorial Day weekend and 40 percent were alcohol-related.

If you keep a few simple safety tips in mind, you can avoid injuries, and keep you and your family safe this Memorial Day weekend:

  • Refrain from using your cell phone to talk or text while driving.
  • Always buckle up, regardless of how far or short your trip is! Make sure all backseat passengers are buckled up, too.
  • Obey posted speed limits, and don’t rush to get to your destination.
  • Do not drive while distracted or drowsy. Drowsy driving can actually be just as dangerous as drunk driving.
  • If you plan on drinking, have a plan on how to get home safe. Remember, even a small amount of alcohol can impair your judgment and affect your reaction time.

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We all are aware that driving is a task that requires 100-percent of our concentration. Anything less and you risk being involved in a serious accident. Sadly, very few people follow this unwritten rule.

Whether it be texting and driving or driving drunk, new figures show that 87 percent of all drivers have admitted to risky behaviors while behind the wheel. The study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that drivers are constantly distracted by technology, the lack of sleep or drugs and alcohol.

AAA broke down the study into different categories researchers considered to be unsafe behaviors: Distracted Driving, Drowsy Driving, Impaired Driving, Red-Light Running, Seat Belt Use, and Speeding.

According to the study that polled nearly 2,500 licensed drivers, most drivers think distracted driving is a bigger problem today than it was three years ago. Still, more than 2 in 5 drivers admitted to reading a text message or an email while driving in the past 30 days.

Nearly 70 percent of the drivers reported talking on a cell phone while driving.

Impaired driving was found also found to be quite prevalent among the drivers polled. More than 1 in 8 drivers admitted to getting behind the wheel when their alcohol level may have been near or above the legal limit.

Drunk driving crashes cost the country more than $50 billion each year.

Our Citrus County Auto Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton hope this research influences drivers to eliminate their risky behaviors while behind the wheel. Not only will this save you money and the headaches associated with any legal action, but it could also save your life.

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Toyota issued a statement on Thursday regarding a recall for 2.9 million sports utility vehicles, including more than 1.1 million in the U.S., because of seat belts that might fail in a crash.

The recall covers RAV4 SUVS from the 2005 through 2014 model years, the RAV4 electric vehicle from 2012 through 2014, sold in North America, and the Vanguard sold in Japan from 2005-2016, the Japanese automaker said.

According to Toyota, it is possible that the belts in both second-row window seats could come in contact with a metal seat cushion frame in a severe frontal crash. If that happens, the belts could be cut and would not restrain passengers.

The company said it will add plastic covers to the metal frame at no cost to customers.

The recall also affects 625,000 vehicles in Europe, 434,000 vehicles in China and 177,000 in Japan.

It is universally known that the use of seat belts saves many lives each and every day. In fact, according to a study by James Madison University, when properly used, safety belts reduce the number of serious traffic injuries by 50 percent and fatalities by 60-70 percent.

And while the benefits of seat belts are undeniable, a defective seat belt can lead to disastrous consequences. If a person is involved in an accident with a flawed seat belt, and that belt fails at the moment of impact, serious injuries, including death, can occur. Sadly, seat belt defects are all too common, as this recall highlights.

Accidents involving defective seat belts can lead to various injuries, including bruises, lacerations, broken and fractured bones, brain injuries and wrongful death. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in an accident, and you have reason to believe that a defective seat belt may have contributed to the injuries, you may have a legal right to financial compensation for the harm suffered. With that said, it is crucial that you explore all of your legal options as soon as possible as there are limitations placed on how long you have to pursue your legal rights.

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The U.S. Department of Transportation issued a press release recently regarding their planned upgrades to the current five-star safety ratings. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced that they will be introducing a new crash test, new human-like crash dummies and advanced crash avoidance technology ratings. These new changes will not only give consumers more information to help them choose a safe vehicle, but should encourage vehicle manufacturers to use the latest in crash protection technology and innovations.

Listed below are the planned changes to the five-star safety ratings:

  • The rating system will encompass assessment of crash-avoidance and advanced technologies as well as pedestrian protection
  • New tests to assess how well vehicles protect pedestrians from head, leg and pelvic injuries
  • New frontal oblique crash test that measures how well vehicles protect occupants in an angled frontal crash
  • Improved full frontal barrier crash test to drive safety improvements for rear-seat occupants
  • New human-like crash dummies with improved data collection and analysis
  • An assessment of additional crash avoidance and advanced technologies
  • Use of half-star increments to provide more specific information for consumers about safety performance
  • The ability to dynamically update the program more swiftly as new technologies emerge

The NHTSA’s five-star safety rating has been informing consumers about the safety of their vehicle choices since 1978. This system is now getting updated and should continue to be updated as new technologies arise regarding passenger occupant safety. Consumers can expect to see these changes take place for model year 2019 vehicles.

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The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety recently released the results of a study regarding the use of hands-free devices. While highly believed to be a safe alternative to texting, this study proves otherwise.

According to the study, it can take 27 seconds for a driver to regain full alertness after making a voice-activated command while driving. This includes all voice-activated commands, from placing a phone call to changing the radio station. These 27 seconds of distraction may occur even if the driver’s hands do not ever leave the steering wheel and their eyes never leave the road. Hands-free is not brain free – the mental distraction is severe enough to be dangerous and to increase the likelihood of becoming involved in an auto accident.

If you have already been involved in a crash, then you should talk to a Citrus County Auto Accident Lawyer at Whittel & Melton about the possibility that the other driver may have been driving distracted at the time of the accident. Cell phone records and other data can easily be obtained after an accident to help prove that the other driver was distracted at the time of the wreck, which could be a crucial piece of evidence in regards to your claim.

Even if you have not been involved in a collision, it is important to try to prevent a crash from occurring. The safest thing to do is not use a cell phone while driving.Twenty-seven seconds is a very long time to have your mind off driving safely.

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According to the American Automobile Association, the roads will be very crowded this Thanksgiving holiday weekend – November 23 through November 27. Last year, 40.9 million Americans traveled during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. AAA estimates this year’s Thanksgiving weekend travelers to total 42.5 million.

Thanksgiving is a highly anticipated holiday, not just because of the typical feasting that comes with it, but because of the celebrating with family and friends. When traveling to your final destination, it is important to drive safely. It is only natural to become impatient on your way to a Thanksgiving celebration, especially if you are hungry, but it is important to keep your focus on the road and driving. Following the tips below will help ensure that you arrive in time for turkey this Thanksgiving weekend:

  • Always buckle up! Seat belts can protect you from serious injury and even save your life in the event of an accident.
  • Avoid distractions! Turn your cell phone off or give it to another passenger to hold so that you are not tempted to use it.
  • Drive sober! We understand that this is a time to celebrate, but please do so responsibly. Refrain from drinking and driving at all times.

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