Buggy Accidents: Injured? How We Can Help!
Auto accidents involving animal-drawn buggy vehicles are not standard mishaps. Buggies are effectively pedestrians on the highway, but just as in a premise liability claim, the actions of the buggy operator can come into play during the case negotiation. However, the legal dynamics are much different, including responsibility and insurance coverage. Accident cases can be much like a walker being struck by a vehicle, but the buggy is still considered a vehicle of sorts even though it is being driven by muscle power of an animal, typically a horse or burro. Cases can be complicated when the issue goes to court, and negotiations can be difficult as well when the respondent insurance company wants to contest a claim. That is why it is essential to have an experienced legal representative like Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore personal injury attorneys in Tampa in any buggy accident.
An animal-drawn buggy is not considered a highway vehicle in Florida even though they can legally use the road. The Florida law specifically states the difference in vehicles is established by motorized or muscle power as a means of propelling the vehicle. Dune buggies are motorized and classed as off-highway vehicles, and they also do not require registration. Horse-drawn buggies should always display some basic safety awareness placards or a flag per some regulations of the particular highways, and multi-lane roads are not authorized routes. Where an accident happens can make a major difference with respect to negligence and a reasonable duty of care exercised by the driver of any involved vehicle.
The primary case complication in buggy accidents is insurance protection and responsibility. Florida uses no-fault accident law, but buggy operators are not required to carry PIP policies even when they use the roadway. This means injury claims must be filed with the opposing driver’s insurance company, which will also want a responsibility determination from the court. Even when a buggy is involved, accident cases will still be presented in court for authorization to pursue damages.
Anyone who has been involved in a buggy accident should retain legal counsel as soon as possible because of legal technicalities in collecting damages. Always call Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore personal injury attorneys in Tampa for comprehensive representation.