According to ABC News, automotive and insurance groups reported that, on average, nearly 300 people drown each year in their car or truck and, annually, over 11,000 wrecks occur that result in a vehicle ending up in the water.
ABC News interviewed a safety expert for their story, and he as well as other experts recommend that you do the following if your car should ever crash into water:
- Remain calm.
- Unfasten your seatbelt.
- If the crash caused the windshield to shatter, try to escape through it.
- If the crash did not shatter the windshield, attempt to open a window (experts say power windows usually keep working under water for a while).
- As the vehicle begins to fill with water, try to escape through the window.
- If you cannot open a window, you will have to use the door, but if that is the case, you will have to wait, because when the vehicle first enters the water, it can be hard to open the door because of the water pressure pushing in from the outside.
- After the water level has risen in the car enough to equalize with the water pressure outside the car, you should be able to open the door and escape that way.
Recently, a Jacksonville accident involving multiple vehicles sent a pickup truck flying off Buckman Bridge and into the St. Johns River. According to The Florida Times-Union, the accident happened during the a.m. rush hour and was the second wreck to occur that morning.
The first accident involved a tractor-trailer truck that jackknifed. Thankfully, there were no injuries in the first wreck, but the accident scene caused traffic delays because of rubberneckers, which police suggested might have contributed to the second crash.
The second accident happened when a Scion in the outside northbound lane swerved to avoid halted traffic. The Scion swerved into a Ford Ranger. As a result of the collision, the Ranger spun out of control and flipped over the bridge’s barrier wall.
By the time Jacksonville Fire and Rescue reached the driver of the Ford, he was dead. His body was found in the water about 25 feet north of the bridge.
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Colson Hicks Eidson – Injury Attorneys