Daytona Beach's "car friendly" beaches pose risk to sunbathers

Daytona, Ormond and Flagler Beach boast some of the country's most beautiful, pristine beaches.  Daytona Beach is one of the few places in the country that allows cars to drive on it's beaches.  However, every year several beach goers are injured, or tragically killed when a car or truck strikes a sunbather or someone just walking along the beach. 

Those suffering personal injury while enjoying the beach need to know their rights.  Similar to pedestrians or bicyclists, a sunbather who is struck by a car would need to look to their own car insurance first to seek medical care.  Florida is a "no fault" state. This law still applies, even to sunbathers injured by a negligent driver.  If you own a car, your PIP insurance will provide for medical up to the applicable limits.  If you do not own a car, but live with relative who does, then their PIP would cover medical.  Only if you or a resident relative do not own a vehicle would be able to seek PIP benefits from the "at fault" party.

With regard to personal injury, the analysis of those injured while sunbathing is the same as other car accidents.  If the "fault party" has Bodily Injury coverage, the injured bather would make a claim for damages for permanent injuries suffered.  If there is no Bodily Injury coverage, then the injured bather could make a claim against their Uninsured Motorist coverage if they had such coverage.

The bottom line is sunbathers in Daytona Beach must share the beach with cars and trucks.  Take caution when placing beach chairs and towels and try to stay far away from traffic lanes. Never assume that drivers will see you.  Daytona Beach has beautiful beaches with many visitors.  It is the responsibility of drivers and sunbathers alike to look out for one another and avoid potential accidents.