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Archive for auto-accident

Scooter Driver Struck in Hit-and-Run

A man was struck by a hit-and-run driver in Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday and received critical injuries.

Police say that Joseph Deverson, 22, was riding a Go-Ped motorized scooter in the 3100 block of Powerline Road around 10:45 p.m. Oakland Park Fire Rescue responded to the scene and transported Deverson to Broward Health Medical Center.

Family and friends gathered at the site of the crash to hold a candlelight vigil for the young man. Vinnie Souza, a friend of the victim, told reporters, “Hoping for the best right now, hope he’ll pull through. We’re all just trying to be strong for him.”

Accident investigators pieced together clues from the scene. It is believed that Deverson was struck by a white 2013 or newer model BMW 6 series car. Based on the pieces of automobile left behind, it is believed that there is likely damage to the hood, bumper, and quarter panel of the vehicle as well as possible damage to the windshield.

Investigators are unsure of the causes of the accident, but wonder if the vehicle’s driver simply did not see Deverson. Go-Peds are not street legal in Fort Lauderdale and it would have been somewhat unusual to see one being driven on the street so late at night. If the driver had remained on the scene, he or she may not have faced any charges.

At this point, the crash is considered to be a hit-and-run, and authorities are searching for both the car and its driver. Anyone with information about either is being asked to contact Detective Carlos DeJesus at 954.321.4840 or Broward Crime Stoppers at 954.493.8477. Calls to Crime Stoppers are anonymous.

While the Go-Ped, and many other forms of scooters, are not permitted on city streets, it is important to remember to be on the lookout for them. As the weather improves, more people will be outdoors enjoying themselves. Make sure that your radio is not

Wrong Way Driver on Interstate 15

SAN DIEGO, Cal – A wrong-way driver, suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol, has been released from jail. Shane McDonald, 21, of San Diego, is accused of driving the wrong way on I15 and slamming head on into another vehicle. Two people in that car died and three others were seriously injured.

McDonald has been charged with five counts of felony DUI causing injury or death and two counts of vehicular manslaughter as a result of the May 2 incident. He has plead not guilty.

According to McDonald’s defense attorney, the man is a college student who rarely drinks. She claims that he and his entire family are devastated over the incident.

Police reports provide details of the accident. The California Highway Patrol says that the accident happened just after 3 a.m. McDonald was operating an Audi A4 in the wrong direction of the highway, ultimately colliding with a Honda Civic carrying a driver and four passengers.

The driver of the Civic apparently saw McDonald coming and attempted to change lanes. McDonald did the same, causing the vehicles to meet head on. The impact of the vehicles was strong enough to kill the driver and a passenger on the scene. One person was ejected from a vehicle, and fire crews had to pry the car open to release people from the back seat of the Civic.

The survivors in the Civic were taken to Scripps La Jolla and Sharp. Injuries included head trauma, broken necks, broken ribs, a broken clavicle, and abdominal injuries. Family members tell media outlets that the survivors are in stable condition and living day-to-day as they try to heal.

McDonald, who admits to smoking marijuana and drinking alcohol, faces 20 years in prison if he is convicted of his alleged crimes.

The decision to drink and drive can have devastating consequences, not only for the driver, but for dozens of other innocent people. If

Texting and Alcohol Do Not Mix in Miami Accident

Mila Dago will soon go to trial for her involvement in an accident that left her passenger and friend dead. Texts have been released to the public, depicting Dago as a young-lover scorned and angry.

To deal with breaking up with her boyfriend, according to police reports, Dago and her friend, Irina Reinoso, hit the town in Miami in August 2013. Throughout a night of drinking and partying, Dago and her ex-boyfriend exchanged 60 texts. Some of those were sent just moments before she ran a red light and caused a crash that proved fatal.

“I’m done you ruined me,” Dago texted. Other texts included “Drinking and driving whoo” and “You’ll be the death of me.” Her final text message was sent just prior to driving her rented Smart Car through a red light and into a pickup truck just before 5 a.m.

Reinoso was pronounced dead on scene and the truck driver knocked unconscious. Dago walked away with only bruises.

Arrested in January of 2014, Dago was placed on house arrest after being released from jail on a $20,000 bond. She has plead not guilty to vehicular homicide, DUI manslaughter, and two counts of DUI with damage to a person. The date of her impending trial has not been set.

Reinoso’s family has filed civil suits against the car rental company and Dago herself.

Drinking and driving was a choice that Dago made, and that poor choice has had severe consequences for several families. Not only has one family lost a child, but a man was seriously injured, and a second family may lose their daughter to prison. To compound the problems, Dago chose to text irate messages to an ex-boyfriend instead of paying attention to the road.

What could Dago have done differently? Several things.

Driving while distracted is as deadly as driving while intoxicated. Doing both is a recipe for disaster. If you decide to spend a

Safety of 15-Passenger Vans Questioned

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla – If you have read the paper or watched a newscast, you have heard of the auto accident that left eight members of a Florida church dead. That accident has brought safety issues with a specific type of van back into the light.

As of yet, no one knows what caused the passenger van to slide off of the road and into a ravine, but the accident has re-exposed safety issues with large passenger vans. The van involved in this particular incident, a 2000 Dodge Ram wagon, is known to have run a stop sign and lose control. It is the difficulty in regaining control of this type of vehicle that has safety officials and advocates revisiting known safety issues.

Chances are high that you will recognize the type of vehicle that officials and advocates are concerned about. The large, box-shaped vans hold 15 passengers and are popular with religious organizations, colleges, and other large groups. But what is wrong with the vehicles?

According to Joan Claybrook, a past head of the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, “Some insurance companies refuse to insure them because it’s so dangerous.” There are numerous issues in the vehicles that make them susceptible to accidents that ultimately result in fatality. Those issues include the width of the vans, their height, the structure of the seats, and the often lack of availability and/or quality of seatbelts.

Officials have been warning the public about the hazards of this type of van for more than 10 years. Organizations utilizing these vans tend to overload them, increasing the risk of rollover and the inability to bring the van under control in an emergency situation. Anyone riding in one of these vans is urged to wear a seatbelt and, if a potential passenger notices that the van will be holding more than 15 people, find another ride.

Federal statistics tell us that in a period

Driver Safety for Slick or Slippery Roads

Cities across the country have seen strange weather patterns this winter, from the excessive snow fall in the Northeast to the freezing cold and rain in the South, and even our neighbors in the Western areas of the country, where there is usually little or no snow fall, have fallen victim to Mother Nature’s whims this season.

This makes it especially more important for everyone to take care and be cautious on the roadways. Here we will share several tips to assist you and your loved ones in remaining safe while traveling on wet or slippery roads.

10 Safety Tips for Travel on Slippery Roads

Regularly check your windshield wipers, headlights, tail lights, and signals to ensure proper operation Regularly check tire pressure and tread to ensure maximum traction and functionality Avoid using cruise control when driving in wet or slippery conditions. You want to have full control of the vehicle and the cruise control has been known to cause vehicles to lose control and even hydroplane Avoid speeding. Even at just 35mph, tires can lose traction when driving conditions are less than ideal Leave several car lengths between your vehicle and the one in front of you in the event the other driver stops suddenly or loses control If you feel your vehicle going into a skid, try not to panic (though that can be easier said than done) Take your foot off of the accelerator DO NOT engage the brakes; they are useless because the vehicle has no traction during a skid Steer the vehicle gently in the direction in which you want it to go; do not turn the wheel aggressively as you will likely completely lose control of the vehicle Allow the front wheels to regain their grip Continue to steer gently in the appropriate direction Always wear your safety belt and ensure are passengers are secured as well In cases where visibility is diminished, drive

Florida Supreme Court Rules on Hit and Runs

Florida Supreme Court Justices have spoken, and prosecutors may now find it more difficult to convict people who are charged with hit-and-run.

In 2013, Florida’s 4th District Court of Appeal overturned Zachariah Dorsett’s conviction and prison sentence. Dorsett had been convicted of leaving the scene of an accident that caused injury. In the accident, Nicholas Savinon, aged 15, was dragged under Dorsett’s pickup truck for a distance of 40 feet.

The appellate court’s ruling included that the jury did not receive two special instructions, one of which would have told them that prosecutors had the duty to prove that Dorsett had knowledge that an accident had occurred. Prosecutors hoped that the Florida Supreme Court would rule that “knowledge” should be more specific. They did not.

Issuing a 13-page ruling, the high court said that the phrase is standard. Written in the unanimous decision is the following:

“The State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the driver had actual knowledge of the crash, an essential element of the crime of leaving the scene of a crash.”

According to public record, there were just over 6,000 crashes in Palm Beach County in 2013 that involved drivers leaving the scene. All of these crashes included injury, property damage, or death. In 2011, the number of hit-and-run accidents were almost half of that number.

Former prosecutor Elizabeth Parker, now a defense attorney, said the ruling will ensure that investigators must give direct evidence that a defendant knew he or she had been involved in an accident. The evidence may come from physical evidence, eyewitness testimony, concrete facts, or confessions.

Convictions can no longer happen based on the fact that a crash occurred and a driver left the scene. That driver must be proven to have known there was a crash.

It is unclear whether the ruling will be retroactive or if it will only apply to cases going forward. The high court

Miami Teen Collides with Pedestrian

MIAMI, Fla – When you give your teenager the keys to the family vehicle, you worry that they will be safe. You hope that they have paid attention when learning the rules of the road, and you hope that they will return home unharmed.

What you rarely consider is that your teen will cause someone else harm.

That is what happened Friday when an inexperienced 16-year-old driver drove through a crosswalk, failing to yield for a pedestrian, sending that pedestrian to the hospital.

The driver who remains unidentified due to age, drove through a crosswalk near Albenga Avenue and San Amaro Drive just after 3 p.m. Friday afternoon. The driver struck 20-year-old Matthew Wisehaupt, a student at University of Miami.

The 2015 gray Audi struck Wisehaupt with enough force that the man was rushed to the hospital from the scene. Wisehaupt’s injuries were reported to be non-life threatening. The teen driver remained on the scene and cooperated with responding officers.

Teach Teens About Distracted Driving

While no information has been reported as to the cause of the accident, not seeing a person in a crosswalk can very well be due to distracted driving. Before you let your teenage driver take control of the wheel, make sure that you lay down some ground rules.

It is recommended that new drivers do not transport groups of friends in the car. Even if your teen driver is focused on the road, the conversation going on in the car can be distracting enough to cause your teen to make mistakes. Do not let your child drive a vehicle containing more than a single friend.

If your teen has a cell phone, install a parental block on that phone and activate it before your child gets in the car. Do not assume that telling your child not to text and drive is enough. There are several apps that you can install that will

Buckle Up: It Could Save Your Life

Over the years there have been numerous campaigns surrounding seat belt use and the associated statistics illustrating how the use of a safety belt can enhance chances for survival after a car accident. To better understand the role of seat belts as they relate to accidents, we need to look at what actually happens to the vehicle and its occupants during a crash.

Anatomy of an Accident

One single car crash involves three different collisions or points of impact for the vehicle and its occupants:

Initial impact – the vehicle hits another vehicle or a stationary object and comes to a stop. Second impact – due to the momentum the vehicle had pre-collision, the bodies of the occupants continue to move forward at the speed at which the vehicle was progressing prior to the initial impact. If the vehicle was progressing at 35mph and came to a full stop upon initial impact, the occupants’ bodies would continue to move at 35mph even once the vehicle stopped moving. Final impact – even once the vehicle and the occupants have stopped moving, the occupants’ internal organs are still in motion and collide internally with bone, tissue, and other organs.

Wearing a safety belt does not alleviate all of the potential damage. It does, however, lessen the severity of the damage by absorbing the impact of the collision in the areas where your body is best able to withstand it; the bones of your hips, shoulders, and chest. Because of the ‘give’ of the seat belt, our body does not come to an immediate stop upon impact.

Data from a University of Washington study shows that the use of a shoulder harness in conjunction with a lap belt reduces risk of death by 86 percent. Though some believe that air bags can be used in place of safety belts, additional data shows that a deploying air bag can be dangerous, and in some

Resolution 2015: No Speeding

Welcome to 2015! If you are like the rest of us, you have given serious though to the things you want to change in 2015 and have probably set some resolutions to get yourself on track. Our typical resolutions include things like spending more time with family and losing some unwanted pounds. Have you considered making a resolution to be a safer driver? How about this year you pick one area of your driving to work on? What about a resolution to stop speeding?

This weekend in San Diego, a 28 year-old man lost his life as a result of operating his vehicle at excessive speeds. The driver missed a left turn; the vehicle then crashed through a guard rail and a chain link fence, fell 100 feet and landed on its roof. The 24 year old passenger suffered severe injuries, but is expected to recover.

According to information from the World Health Organization, controlling vehicle speed not only prevents crashes, but can also lessens the injuries that occur as a result of a crash. Pedestrians and cyclists are particularly vulnerable to speed risks. Studies have shown that pedestrians have a 90% higher chance of survival if struck by a vehicle travelling at or below 19 miles per hour. Chances of survival decrease to less than 50% when speeds reach 27 miles per hour or greater.

How Speed Affects Collisions and Injury

The greater the speed, the less time a driver has to react in an effort to avoid a crash A vehicle traveling at 31 mph requires approximately 42 feet of stopping distance Increasing speed by 1 mile per hour Increases the chance of an injury-involved crash by 3% Increases the chance of fatality by 4 – 5%

The National Highway Safety Administration in their 2011 National Survey of Speeding Attitudes and Behaviors posed several questions to diverse driver populations including self-confessed speeds, sometime speeders, and non-speeders where

Altercation Turns Deadly

Two teens who are said to have met and had an altercation at a party took their fight to the roadways. Juan Rebollar, 18 and Jose De Jesus Garcia, 19, exchanged words at a house party. When Garcia left the party, Rebollar followed him. The two are said to have reached speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour when Rebollar intentionally hit Garcia’s vehicle, sending him careening off the road into a pillar.

As Garcia lay dying in his car, Rebollar exited his vehicle and fled the scene. He later went to the local police station to report his vehicle stolen. After investigation and further interrogation of Rebollar, the police found the story to be contrived and Rebollar was placed under arrest for hit-and-run and assault with a deadly weapon involving a vehicle. Rebollar, who does not have a driver’s license, is being held on $500,000 bail and could face up to 11 years in prison.

Road rage is a growing phenomenon. This particular incident started off-road and turned into a roadway tragedy. Information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provides the following facts specific to aggressive driving and road rage:

Aggressive driving includes: Driving at excessive speeds Following too closely Weaving through traffic Ignoring traffic signals Yelling at or gesturing to other drivers


Road rage is usually an escalation from aggressive driving Sociologists suggest these instances are a breakdown in our overall view of community Psychologist say it is due to the power and anonymity we possess when behind the wheel Traffic engineers feel it is due to overall driving patterns


Possible causes of road rage Driver fatigue Having an overall bad day Use of drugs or alcohol Anger at life in general Anxiety about driving A need to reach their destination quickly

Whatever the cause, and regardless of why it happens, the most important thing for all drivers is to stay out of