Three Car Accident Snarls I-95

An auto accident involving a police car snarled traffic on Interstate 95 southbound at J. Butler Boulevard, closing the road for around two hours Wednesday afternoon during rush hour.
An officer with Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office was traveling southbound on I-95 behind two other vehicles around 3:30 p.m. When traffic began to slow, the first car, driven by a woman, slowed down. A car behind her slowed too and pulled to the left. Then the marked JSO car failed to slow quickly enough and struck the two cars.

The officer suffered minor injuries and the two other drivers were not hurt. Luckily all were wearing their seat belts. An investigation could lead to charges against the officer or at least a reprimand.

Complicating matters was an afternoon downpour which may have contributed to the accident.

Certainly in rainy conditions, it is imperative to slow down because rain alters drivers’ perception. It’s not only harder to see, but a car can hydroplane or lose traction. We are thankful that everyone is alright and wore their seat belts.

Florida has its share of afternoon rain storms so it’s important to understand the rules of the road under those conditions. Many drivers believe it is legal, if they slow down in rainy conditions, to put on their hazard blinking lights to alert the cars behind them of their slow speed. Many drivers here come from up north where they can use hazard lights in a snowstorm, but in Florida it is not legal to do so. According to the statute, only vehicles that are disabled or stopped lawfully can have their hazard lights on. The law is designed to avoid the confusion of having drivers think the blinking light indicates the car is stopped. This nonmoving violation in the state is punishable with a fine of about $70.

By all means, turn on your headlights (not high beams) and wipers. Definitely slow down, going 55 mph in a 55 mph zone can be considered reckless driving if it’s raining. Wear your seat belt and avoid distractions such as cell phones, texting or changing CDs. Just don’t put on those flashing hazard lights unless you want to receive a ticket.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident in Jacksonville, it may be in your best interest to contact an experienced Jacksonville car accident attorney from Farah and Farah. Our lawyers are well-versed in personal injury and wrongful death litigation and will utilize our legal knowledge to protect your rights as an auto accident victim. Call Farah and Farah today at 800-533-3555 for a free consultation.

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