The cost is immense to repair a property, cover the loss of assets and account for the many people that are injured or killed when a car crashes into a store. The Storefront Safety Council, in cooperation with the Texas Traffic Institute, has been collecting data since 2012 on these accidents and their data is vital, as there is no official data on these crashes at the federal or state level.
There are some related reports by US DOT, however. The data collected by the Council covers crashes into non-residential buildings and was broken down into three main categories - by age, cause, and site type.
Storefront crashes in Florida
The council recognizes that the statistics on drivers' age has prompted the need for more study. Two points in particular have drawn interest. The first being that Florida is "far and away leading the United States in number of crashes and rate of crashes versus percentage of licensed drivers."
Florida's statistics exemplify the correlation between a state's rate of elderly drivers and storefront crashes and also point to the second trend requiring more study. Elderly drivers, defined as 60 years and older, make up only 19 percent of all licensed drivers but account for 45 percent of storefront crashes. These statistics are concerning for business and property owners here in South Florida.
The other two data categories, cause and site type, have not prompted the need for further study, apart from continued data collection. The top three most common causes for storefront crashes are operator error (at 30 percent), pedal error (at 26 percent), and DUI (at 17 percent). The top three sites where these accidents occur include retail with 24 percent while commercial and other saw 23 percent and 20 percent, respectively.
Solutions to the problem
Nationally, there are over 60 storefront crashes everyday, resulting in over 3,600 injuries and nearly 500 deaths every year. One of the best solutions for protecting stores and their occupants is installing bollards. These sturdy metal posts can stop a car from barreling down the sidewalk or lurching into a storefront display.
Since 2012, multiple ordinances have gone into effect to encourage the use of these safety measures. However, these are not yet universal. If you or someone you know has been injured, contact Gonzalez Cartwright P.A., Trial Lawyers to ensure your rights are upheld.