Each year, there are hundreds of thousands of auto accidents across Florida, including more than 60,000 accidents in Miami-Dade County. Approximately 40 percent of these accidents result in injuries, with many accidents involving multiple victims.
In 2017, we saw a spike in total crashes – there were more than 402,000 accidents across Florida. Not only was this the highest total on record with Florida’s Integrated Report Exchange System (FIRES), but it represented an astonishing 75 percent increase compared to 2011 (the earliest year on record). Fortunately, it looks like the upward trend is finally ending in 2018; however, with more than 370,000 accidents halfway through December, it is clear that more needs to be done to protect drivers and passengers on Florida’s roads.
March Remains One of the Most Dangerous Months for Auto Accidents in Florida
March was the busiest month for auto accidents in 2018, following the trend of the previous five years. Interestingly, May had the second-highest number of accidents in 2018, which was a deviation from prior years in which May saw a roughly average number of vehicle collisions.
Setting aside December (as the finally tally remains to be calculated), November saw the lowest number of accidents in 2018 (30,716). However, this was only slightly lower than the next-lowest totals in June and July (which were 31,072 and 31,029, respectively).
Accident Statistics in Miami-Dade County Correlate to Statewide Averages
Broadly speaking, the accident statistics for Miami-Dade County correlate with Florida’s statewide averages. In 2017 we once again saw a seven-year high, and 2018 is currently on pace to come in just under 2017’s record number. March and May were the busiest months for auto accidents in Miami-Dade County in 2018, while the monthly totals have fallen each month since the end of summer.
Notably, while Miami-Dade County is home to approximately 13 percent of Florida’s population of full-time residents, close to 16 percent of all accidents statewide occurred in the county in 2018.
Friday Night is the Most Dangerous Time to Drive
Consistent with prior years, Friday afternoon was the most dangerous time to be on the road during 2018. More accidents happened on Fridays than any other day of the week during the year, and the hours from 2:00pm through 6:00pm had the highest accident totals of all hours during the day. Weather was a potential factor in just 10 percent of accidents, with 90 percent of all accidents occurring under clear or cloudy skies (with no precipitation). This, too, was consistent the figures from prior years.
Florida Continues to See a High Number of Accidents Compared to Other States
Nationwide, Florida remains one of the most-dangerous states for driving. According to data from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Florida sees more accidents each year than every state except for California and Texas. While this is largely attributable to the state’s population and annual influx of vacationers, our state’s high rates of drunk driving and distracted driving accidents are contributing factors as well.