Oakland Park is a great place to live, work, and visit. Recent efforts to revitalize the city have only helped a booming tourism economy. In 2015, more than 2.6 million visitors passed through the thriving culinary arts hub of Southeastern Florida. While the increase in tourism is doing wonders for the local economy, job creation, and diversity, it is also making Oakland Park roads more dangerous.
The number of accidents and injuries in Oakland Park have nearly doubled since 2012. Fortunately, only the frequency of accidents has increased. Statistics show that while accidents are happening more frequently, there is no significant increase in the seriousness of those crashes. In fact, there have been no reported traffic accident fatalities in Oakland Park in recent years.
Oakland Park Traffic Accidents
Oakland Park is an increasingly busy place. More than 41,000 people call the City of Oakland Park home, thousands more travel to the city for work, and millions more visit each year as tourists. While Oakland Park does have several public transportation options, including access via the Florida East Coast Railway, its roads have seen significant increases in vehicular traffic.
The Dixie Highway, Oakland Park Boulevard, I-95, and Powerline Roads all connect Oakland Park with other parts of the state and have all been overwhelmed with more traffic in recent years.
Local intersections in Oakland Park, including NE 6th Ave and NE 43rd Street and Floranada Road and NE 11th Ave, have also seen considerably more traffic jams. As a result, there have been more accidents involving cars, bikes, commercial vehicles, and pedestrians within the city’s limits.
Accidents by the Numbers
Just how common are traffic accidents in Oakland Park? Here’s a look at accident statistics, as reported by Florida’s Integrated Report Exchange System.
Since 2012, there has been an 80 percent increase in the number of traffic accidents in Oakland Park. The increase has been steady over time:
- 2012: 44
- 2013: 52
- 2014: 47
- 2015: 57
- 2016: 70
- 2017: 79.
It appears as if the number of accidents in Oakland Park will continue to rise. In the first five months of 2018, there have already been 35 reported crashes in the city.
However, as stated earlier, accidents are happening more frequently, but they aren’t necessarily more severe. Oakland Park police have not reported traffic accident fatality in recent years. However, approximately half of all crashes in Oakland Park do result in injury.
Revitalization Efforts to Protect Pedestrians
Oakland Park has recently taken steps to make its downtown district a much friendlier place for pedestrians and bicyclists. According to a local Miami pedestrian accident attorney, this was likely due, in part, to the dangerous road conditions that posed a serious risk of harm to downtown guests. Lavent, who is a founding partner of Lavent Law, a Miami-area personal injury law firm, says that most pedestrian accidents happen at busy downtown intersections.
“The City of Oakland Park has really made it a priority to protect pedestrians from being injured in accidents,” Lavent explains. “They’ve installed a lot of key safety features that can not only reduce the rate of accidents, but also minimize injuries, as well.”
Some safety features include:
- Increased signage for motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians
- Dedicated and separate pedestrian walkways
- Installation of lighting features
- Concrete planters and barriers separating pedestrians and motorists
- Limiting traffic in the downtown district.
What Should I Do If I’m Injured in Oakland Park?
While Oakland Park is doing everything it can to reduce traffic accidents in the city, crashes will still happen. If you happen to be involved in an Oakland Park traffic accident, it is important to contact Oakland Park authorities immediately.
Reporting your accident can allow your accident to be properly recorded and investigated. These investigations will allow the City of Oakland Park to improve safety measures and help to minimize accidents in the future. If you suffer an injury in your accident, these records can also be invaluable in supporting any claim for compensation. Any questions about your legal rights should be directed to an attorney who is familiar with local Florida law and procedure.