Category Archives: Lifestyle / News

Driving During a Heavy Storm

hazardsMother Nature was in a particularly angry mood this past weekend, unleashing lots of thunder, lightning, and some heavy downpours which resulted in traffic lights not working. As is often the case with thunderstorms, South Florida drivers sometimes forget what they should and not do when lights go out or when it’s raining heavily.

As we’ve mentioned in the past, do not use your hazard lights during heavy rain. It only serves to confuse other drivers and perhaps most importantly, it is illegal. Hazard lights should be used if a vehicle is stopped or disabled on the roadside or if it is part of a funeral procession. Drivers may wish to turn on their low beams during heavy rain instead.

When traffic lights are out and you approach a four-way intersection, they are to be treated as a four-way stop. If you are the first to arrive, you are the first to proceed. However, if you arrive at the light at the same as another vehicle, the driver of the vehicle on the left is expected to yield the right of way to a vehicle on the right.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

School Will Soon Be in Session, Watch Your Speed

schoolBusYellowCountless children throughout South Florida will soon be returning for another school year, which means law enforcement officers will be out patrolling the school zones to make sure children and adults remain safe.

Speeding in a school zone is taken seriously, which means there are stiff penalties for drivers caught running afoul of the law. A driver can be fined over $1,000 depending on how fast they are traveling through the school zone and they will have points added to their driving record, including six points plus a potential license suspension if the driver is involved in an accident while speeding through a school zone.

Drivers who believe there may be discrepancies with a speeding citation they have received may wish to consult a traffic ticket attorney who will meticulously examine the citation to determine if penalties can be reduced or if the charges can be dismissed entirely. For example, does the time reflected on the ticket coincide with the hours the posted school zone speed limit was in effect?

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

The Risks of In-Vehicle Technology

automobile-automotive-car-1135379Today’s vehicles feature sophisticated technology, including interactive touch panels that allow drivers to do a host of things, from changing radio stations to setting up a route on their GPS. While the technology is useful, it can potentially cause distractions, albeit perhaps less so now that drivers are legally forced to refrain from texting while driving.

With older drivers, it’s another story.

The AAA Foundation for Traffic recently found in a new study that older drivers are often more distracted than younger ones. Drivers at least age 55 to 75 will take their eyes off of the road several seconds longer than younger drivers when they are performing tasks such as managing the radio or dealing with navigation, as much as eight seconds more. Considering that taking your eyes off of the road for as little as two seconds can increase the chances of being involved in a crash twice as much, it reinforces the need to stay focused.

Some easy tips for safer driving include making use of voice commands whenever possible or becoming comfortable with the infotainment panel before heading off. Regardless of your age, avoid interacting with infotainment panels while the vehicle is in motion unless it is an absolute emergency.

To read more, visit https://www.mysuncoast.com/2019/08/02/study-older-drivers-are-more-likely-drive-distracted-than-younger-drivers-when-using-in-car-technology/.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with one of the Miami criminal traffic lawyers today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Say Hello to the Palmetto Express Lanes

miamiHighwaysThose of you that take the southbound Palmetto Expressway (also known as State Road 826) frequently may have noticed a major change. After extensive work, the express lanes are officially open. Stretching for thirteen miles from West Flagler Street to just north of Northwest 154th Street, and at I-75 to Northwest 170th Street, these express lanes are intended to ease traffic for drivers willing to pay a premium by allowing them to move quickly through the highway away from the free lanes which move slower.

Similar to their I-95 siblings (which locals refer to as the “Lexus Lanes”), the Palmetto express lanes will charge tolls based on the flow of traffic, which is paid for using SunPass. Drivers that frequently travel the I-95 express lanes know that the tolls can cost over $10 during the rush hour period. It’s also worth noting that these express lanes end at certain points which means drivers should be aware of where they are going so as not to become one of those drivers that illegally plow through the barriers and become a safety risk after realizing they are going to miss their exit.

What are your thoughts on the Palmetto express lanes? Do you think they will help with easing congestion?

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket lawyer team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami speeding ticket lawyer today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Demystifying the New Texting While Driving Law

unnamed (2)By now you’re likely aware that Florida’s texting while driving law is in effect. Although officers are only issuing warnings at this point, it’s a good idea to get into the habit of not using phones during the transitional period. Should you be confused about the law, the following may help clarify some things.

You can talk on the phone while you’re holding it, but this does not apply in a school or construction zone. Beginning in October, drivers won’t be allowed to hold these devices for any reason when traveling through these zones, so it may be wise to get into the habit of using a hands-free solution.

Again, you shouldn’t be texting for any reason while driving but should you decide to do so while stopped at a light, law enforcement cannot give you a warning/ticket if the vehicle is not in motion. However, if your texting is impeding traffic flow, you may be cited.

For drivers that may use their phones as dashcams of sorts, it may be a good idea to have a passenger do the recording for you. Holding the phone while attempting to drive and record is considered a distraction.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice.

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Texting While Driving Law Is Now in Effect

textDrive (2)In case you haven’t heard or read our previous blogs, being caught texting while driving will get you pulled over. The new law marks an upgrade from Florida’s previous stance when it was legally a secondary offense, This meant a driver would’ve had to commit another infraction before they could be cited for using their phone while on the road. As a primary offense, this is no longer the case, which means a driver can be pulled over for texting while driving regardless of whether or not another infraction was committed.

For drivers concerned about how they can use their phones with the new law, is specifically targets texting and typing. This means a driver can still use their phone for GPS purposes, they can still hold the phone up to their ear when talking on the phone and they can also check alerts behind the wheel are still allowed. For those that must send a text for whatever reason, they can legally do so while stopped at a red light. However, the phone must be put away once the light turns green.

Starting in October, Florida is taking things one step further by completely barring the use of a cell phone when driving through a school or construction zone.

For the time being, officers will largely be issuing warnings to drivers that are caught texting while driving, with citations coming in 2020.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Driving Through Construction Zones

under-928246_1280The state of Florida does not look kindly on drivers that do not practice safety when they are traveling through a work zone. Back in 2016, the Florida Department of Transportation reported one of the highest construction zone fatality rates in the United States.

Due to the costs both monetary and bodily in construction zone crashes, there are typically double fines imposed when drivers are caught violating construction zones, particularly if workers are present. These violations may be caused due to unsafe practices commonly seen in construction zones, which include disobeying the speed limits, merging at the very last minute when a lane is about to end, driving distracted, and not slowing down when there is an emergency vehicle on the roadside.

Work zone speeding fines can be as much as $500 and it may also result in receiving driving record points. Should you receive a citation for a construction zone violation, an experienced traffic ticket lawyer may be able to assist with reducing the charges or potentially getting your case entirely dismissed.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket lawyer team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami speeding ticket today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Florida Launches Its Click It or Ticket Campaign

seatbeltIf you don’t regularly wear your seat belt when you’re out and about on the Florida roadways, watch out! Last week, several police departments across the state launched their “Click It or Ticket” seat belt campaign. During this time, law enforcement officers will be increasing their patrol until June 2nd as a greater number of drivers are expected to be out on the roads due to the upcoming Memorial Day weekend.

Per the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were over 10,000 unbuckled passenger vehicle occupants that lost their lives in a crash in the United States back in 2017. During this same year, over fifty percent of occupants that died during the evening hours were not wearing seatbelts. With that in mind, one of the primary goals of the Click It or Ticket campaign is to enforce wearing seat belts at night. Officers are employing a zero-tolerance approach when it comes to enforcing wearing seat belts, regardless of the time of day.

Driving without a seat belt on is considered a primary offense in the state of Florida, which means an officer has the authority to pull a driver over if they are caught not wearing one. All passengers are required by law to wear a seat belt.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with someone at the Miami ticket law firm today.

Intoxicated Horseback Riding May Result in a DUI

horseRoadGetting a DUI typically happens because the driver was caught operating a vehicle while under the influence. However, with Florida’s reputation for often making headlines for some unusual or amusing reasons, there are examples of people being arrested for DUI despite not having driven something like a car, truck, or motorcycle.

Two examples happened back in November of 2017. A woman was arrested for DUI when she was stopped after drivers caught her riding her horse on a highway. When law enforcement administered a breathalyzer, she was well over the legal limit. In another example, a man was charged with a DUI after erratically driving a lawnmower on the road with a case of beer in tow. He too was well over the legal limit when he was stopped.

Sure enough, taking a closer look at Florida statute 316.193 reveals that although a person must be driving or physically controlling a vehicle, there is no clear definition stating the vehicle is limited solely to a traditional automobile or a type of motor vehicle. It is indeed quite possible to get a DUI while riding a horse, a lawnmower, a golf cart, or even a motorized wheelchair.

To read more and see other examples, please visit https://blogs.lawyers.com/attorney/dui-dwi/can-you-get-a-dui-in-florida-if-youre-not-driving-a-car-53980/.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with someone at the Miami ticket law firm today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Illegal Immigrants May Become Licensed Drivers

driveFlorida is once again generating national headlines, and you may have already read about the reason why. A bill was recently introduced into Florida’s House and Senate that would bestow driver’s licenses to immigrants regardless of their current immigration status. The bill would allow immigrants that may be here illegally to use documents such as a foreign birth certificate or an unexpired foreign passport to obtain their license.

The House bill sponsor believes the legislation will create a deeper level of trust with those that may be considered “marginalized” and it will also make the roads safer. The Florida Immigrant Coalition also backs up this belief, stating that permitting those without proper documentation to receive a license would “cement” trust in law enforcement. The group also believes that insurance premiums would be lower and the roads would be safer.

Only time will tell whether illegal immigrants will be able to legally drive on the Florida roadways. For now, at least, current state law requires that anyone wishing to obtain a driver’s license must prove they are a citizen of the United States or a resident alien.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a red light camera violation attorney today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.