Warm Florida Weather May Have a Downside for Tampa Pedestrians
Damian Mallard, Esq.
Just because the sun is shining and mild weather is constant in Tampa Bay, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and Sarasota, it doesn’t mean that pedestrians are safe walking the streets in these cities. While the nicer Florida weather encourages people to travel by foot, causing more pedestrians to walk to their destinations, it also is a factor in higher pedestrian crash rates. “Our climate makes it possible for us to actually be out walking around and riding bicycles virtually 12 months of the year,” said Paul Bertels, Clearwater traffic operations manager.
Because of the nice weather, visitors, tourists, and snowbirds cause an increase in the population in an already dense area, producing heavier car and pedestrian traffic. The population gets even denser during the winter as northern residents and even transients travel south to reach the warmer weather for the winter season. What this means is that traffic increases on the roadways, which can be dangerous for pedestrians, especially because the roads were primarily designed for motorized traffic, not for pedestrians, said Bertels.
In order to minimize your chances of a pedestrian accident and stay safe this winter when traveling by foot in South Florida, you will need to do the following:
- Be extra alert.
- Don’t jaywalk.
- Only cross at crosswalks.
- Push the walk button and wait.
- Cross when the pedestrian crossing signal shows it is safe.
- Look both ways before stepping out into traffic.
- Don’t walk distracted.
- Don’t walk while intoxicated.
If you were injured in a Florida pedestrian accident due to no fault of your own, please call the Mallard Law Firm at 888-409-3805 to speak with a skilled Sarasota accident attorney for a complimentary, no-obligation consultation today.
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