Christmas is just one week away, and the stores in Winter Haven are bustling more than ever! This week will be busy with shoppers trying to find last-minute gifts, grabbing what they need for their holiday parties, and stocking up on stocking stuffers before the big day. In all of the hustle, accidents can, and frequently do, happen. There are many “hot spots” in Winter Haven that lead to collisions more than others. Knowing these can help you avoid dangerous situations and protect yourself as you finish your Christmas errands this week.
What are the most dangerous roads in Winter Haven?
Winter Haven has continued to grow and develop, and the last 3 years have seen a huge increase in our population. Of course, this increased traffic as well. Our local roads and highways are where you’ll feel this the most, and where most of our serious car accidents occur.
Cypress Gardens Blvd.
This main thoroughfare through Winter Haven runs from Highway 27 to Highway 17 and houses many of the shopping centers, restaurants, and stores that local shoppers love. Traffic creates many problems along this road, and on busy days, people cut through yellow lights or speed across an intersection to save time. This causes many dangerous, and sometimes deadly, accidents.
Cypress Gardens Road
Cypress Gardens Road is another busy street in Winter Haven, connecting Cypress Gardens Blvd. to many backstreets. It also links up with Downtown Winter Haven. Because it can be used as a “shortcut”, especially on heavy traffic days, speeding is a problem on this road. Be mindful of stop signs on Cypress Gardens Road as they can pop up unexpectedly in the residential areas!
“Bloody 27” is one of the most dangerous roads in the Winter Haven area. This highway takes shoppers all the way down to Interstate 4. A popular destination on this route is the Posner Park shopping center. Posner Park houses a variety of stores and restaurants which draw crowds during the holiday season. Highway 27 is also the most common way Winter Haven residents utilize for trips to Celebration, Disney, and other Orlando attractions. This road is busy all year long and a common place for serious, and often deadly, accidents.
Why do accidents happen more frequently during the holidays?
There are many reasons Winter Haven sees an uptick in car accidents during the holiday season. As local accident lawyers, the most common factors we see are:
- more pedestrian traffic (holiday shoppers, sightseers, etc.)
- an increase in tourists
- distracted driving (looking at Christmas lights or talking on the phone)
- driving under the influence (holiday parties)
- increase in traffic during morning/evening hours (due to shopping and holiday errands)
If you’ll be on the roads in the week ahead, remember
Designated Drivers save lives.
Going to a holiday party or out for drinks with friends? Put down your keys and pick up your phone. Calling a friend or family member to provide a ride home, or hiring a rideshare service, could save your life and the lives of others around you on the road. NEVER drink and drive.
Distracted driving isn’t just texting.
While texting and driving remains a top cause of distracted driving accidents, it’s not the only form of distraction. Eating, drinking, talking on the phone (even hands-free!), looking at Christmas lights, touching up makeup, or even turning around to speak to someone in the back seat can all lead to deadly accidents. Drive like it’s your job. That means keep your mind engaged and your hands on the wheel until you park your vehicle.
The speed limit exists for a reason.
Speed limits aren’t just there to keep you from having fun or making it to work on time. Posted speed limits are there to protect you, pedestrians, and anyone else sharing the road. Speeding is never ok.
I was hit while Christmas shopping. Who should I call?
No matter the time of the year or the season, being mindful when driving in Winter Haven is the best way to protect yourself from an accident this Christmas. Minimizing distractions while behind the wheel, staying in tune with pedestrians and other drivers around you, and following basic rules of the road are especially important when shoppers are out in full force and the roads are extra busy. If you find yourself facing an injury or damages because of another driver’s negligence, the team at Brooks Law Group is here for you. We are Winter Haven’s top choice for legal representation, fighting for victims and getting the justice they deserve and the compensation they need. Our free, no-obligation consultations make sure you feel confident in your decision to choose us. Call us!
Happy shopping and Happy New Year!