Wrong-way crashes are serious accidents that can cause severe injuries. No one wants to see headlights coming towards them, especially on the Howard Frankland Bridge where there’s nowhere to go to avoid the crash. Wrong-way crashes happen all too often in Tampa Bay, and now authorities are taking steps to make the roads safer.
Howard Frankland Bridge
After a spate of wrong-way crashes on the Howard Frankland Bridge, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is taking steps to curb accidents caused by wrong-way drivers. Six cameras have been installed along the bridge that can detect whether a driver is going the wrong way. If a driver is going the wrong way, an alarm activates at the FDOT dispatch center. FDOT can then notify the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) of the situation. FHP dispatch is in the same building as FDOT.
Within seconds FDOT can also change message boards on the bridge to advise other drivers to be on the lookout for a wrong-way driver. The hope is that drivers can take evasive maneuvers if necessary and that FHP can quickly get to the scene before tragedy strikes. The system began testing this past spring.
Curbing Wrong-Way Driving
While signs on the bridge are a great first step in preventing wrong-way crashes, more needs to be done to end the problem. Most wrong-way drivers are driving while impaired by drugs and alcohol. Better enforcement of Florida’s drunk driving laws and educating the public on the dangers of driving while impaired may help lessen the problem. Wrong-way crashes should never happen as long as people follow the law.
Dangers of Wrong-Way Crashes
Some people discount the seriousness of wrong-way crashes because they don’t happen very frequently. However, wrong-way crashes are more likely to be fatal than other types of accidents. In some cases, multiple fatalities can occur. Two vehicles hitting head-on can collide with tremendous force as both objects are moving in opposite directions. In addition, you have far less time to respond to a wrong-way driver in your path, especially when both vehicles are traveling at high speeds.
Contact an Experienced Tampa Bay Car Accident Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a wrong-way accident, you may want to have an experienced car accident attorney evaluate your case. At Abrahamson & Uiterwyk, we’ve been helping Tampa Bay car accident victims for over 30 years. Contact us online or call us at 800-753-5203 to set up your free consultation today.