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Accident involving a habitual traffic offender causes injuries

A two-vehicle accident in Hillsborough County near the beginning of this month sent four people to the hospital, one with serious injuries. The accident occurred when a man driving a pickup truck rear-ended an SUV, causing the SUV to leave the road and overturn near the shoulder. The driver of the overturned vehicle and two teenage passengers received care for minor injuries, while a 13-year-old passenger was taken to the hospital for treatment of serious injuries. Thankfully, all in the rear-ended car were wearing seatbelts.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, that driveris a known "habitual traffic offender." He left the scene of the accident on foot, and was later apprehended by the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.

In the state of Florida, a habitual traffic offender is any person who has accumulated at least threeconvictions for traffic related offenses within a five-year period. These offenses can include a number of things, all defined inFlorida Statute 322.264.

For example, a conviction on a felony charge using a vehicle would qualify. In addition, failure to stop to help at the scene of a fatal accident is a noted offense included in the law. Also, a conviction for driving with a revoked license - including incidents involving a commercial motor vehicle - would qualify. Another qualifying conviction would be one for voluntary or involuntary manslaughter where the death resulted from the operation of the vehicle.

If a personhas been injured in a car accident with a habitual traffic offender, an experienced personal injury attorney may be able to help build a civil case in which those criminal charges can be used as evidence. This evidence could help support significant compensation for thepain and suffering caused by the accident.

Source: Bay News 9, "2-vehicle accident in Hillsborough County sends 4 to hospital," Nov.6, 2017

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