Howard Frankland Bridge crash highlights dangers of reckless driving

Reckless driving involves failing to prioritize safety, disregarding the rules of the road and ignoring the consequences of your driving practices when behind the wheel. Unfortunately, far too many drivers engage in reckless driving behaviors that put themselves and others at risk of suffering serious injuries or even death due to auto accidents.

In a recent Florida crash, a man died after his SUV flew over the Howard Frankland Bridge barrier and into Tampa Bay. Officials said the two drivers involved in the fatal accident were driving “aggressively and recklessly” and seemed to provoke each other.

National data indicates reckless driving is becoming more and more common. In a 2016 study, the American Automobile Association found that around eight million U.S. drivers engaged in extreme road rage, including exiting their vehicle to confront another driver or slamming into another car on purpose.

In Florida, drivers can be cited for reckless driving. However, reckless driving tends to go unnoticed by law enforcement officials until it occurs in connection with a crash. An auto accident can be attributed to reckless driving and driver negligence if it is caused by behaviors such as speeding, passing dangerously, drunk driving, tailgating, using a cellphone or other distracted driving practices.

Although you may have no control over reckless drivers, you can choose how you react to them. The key to safe driving is for drivers is to remain calm and make every effort to minimize conflict on the road. It is best not to engage with drivers who are displaying aggressive behaviors, such as gesturing or shouting. Responding in a heated manner will only escalate the situation and lead to potentially dangerous consequences.

If you see someone driving recklessly, you can call the police and let them handle the situation. If you or a loved one was injured in an auto accident with a reckless driver, contact Joyce and Reyes to learn how you can pursue compensation.