Beachgoers in Volusia County were able to breathe a little easier after Thursday, December 29, when the county rolled out its new compact utility vehicles that will be used to patrol the beach. The utility task vehicles, or UTVs, are replacing the large pickup trucks used to patrol Daytona Beach which have injured a number of beachgoers. Last July, a sunbather was run over by a part-time lifeguard in a pickup truck who said he couldn’t see her because of the blind spot of the high truck. The woman, who was visiting South Daytona Beach from the mid-west, suffered head injuries, broken ribs, facial paralysis, a collapsed lung, and is still dealing with pain and memory loss.
The new UTVs are larger than an all-terrain vehicle but smaller than a pickup, and should offer lifeguards a 360-degree view of the beach and visitors. Like an all-terrain vehicle, they have open sides so people can approach the lifeguards, yet are big enough to accommodate emergency equipment and a surfboard. They are designed with a rubberized bumper to minimize any injury to visitors. Eventually, the county hopes to have 10 vehicles at a cost of $15,000 each. Pickup trucks will still be used but on a much more limited basis.
Personal Injury Lawsuit for Negligence
The injured woman’s family has filed a personal injury lawsuit against the county for negligence and is challenging sovereign immunity which usually blocks lawsuits against government entities. She was the third sunbather to be run over by the beach patrol in a year. The part-time lifeguard was issued a citation for careless driving. If you have been injured in any type of accident, the Volusia County personal injury lawyers of Farah & Farah can help you obtain compensation for your injuries. For a complimentary consultation with our law team, call (800) 533-3555.