Hit-and-Runs in Florida on the Rise
Early in the morning on June 14, George Meada, 64, struck bicyclist Corey Daniel Lozano, 29, on PGA Boulevard, just east of Beeline Highway. Meada, on his way home with his wife after a night out in Palm Beach Gardens, did not stop or call 9-1-1. Later, at around 6:30 AM, a passing motorist saw Lozano’s body lying on the side of the road and called the police. Lozano had died as a result of the crash.
Lozano’s death is one of an alarmingly high, and growing, number of hit-and-run fatalities in Florida. According to the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP), 1 in 4 crashes in Florida is a hit-and-run. From 2013 to 2014, hit-and-run fatalities increased 23%, and nearly half of those fatalities were pedestrians. In 2012, the FHP released data revealing that 3 out of 5 car accident fatalities were pedestrians struck during hit-and-run crashes.
In response to the rise in hit-and-run crashes, the Florida State Senate and House of Representatives passed the “Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act”, which took effect on July 1, 2014. The bill increased the mandatory minimum sentence for leaving the scene of an accident, also known as hit-and-run crashes, resulting in serious bodily injury or death from 2 years to 4 years. It elevated hit-and-run crashes resulting in injury to 3rd degree felonies, hit-and-run crashes resulting in serious injury to 2nd degree felonies, and hit-and-run crashes resulting in death to 1st degree felonies. Additionally, all drivers convicted of leaving the scene of an accident will lose their license for a minimum of 3 years.
With the elevated dangers of hit-and-run accidents we face in Florida, it’s especially important for drivers to know the laws about sharing the road with bicyclists and pedestrians, and for pedestrians to take some of these steps to keep themselves safe:
Attorney David Shiner and Shiner Law Group encourage our community to commute with caution. We live and work in your community and are here to help you recover with the best care and maximum compensation available. If you’ve been the victim of an accident or a hit-and-run crash, seek medical attention and contact the attorneys at Shiner Law Group to help make sure your rights are protected.
Our personal injury attorneys are local and available 24/7. Call 561-777-7700 for a FREE Case Evaluation.