With nearly 400,000 permanent residents and 15 million visitors each year, Tampa is undoubtedly one of the most popular cities in the U.S. Fortunately, Tampa has a relatively low crime rate of 1.9% per 100,000 people, falling below the national average of 2.3%.
While most tourists will feel perfectly safe when visiting Tampa, it’s when you’re traveling on the roads that you need to be most careful. More than 28,000 collisions occurred in Hillsborough County in 2021, with a significant proportion taking place in Tampa itself. With 18,695 injuries and 277 fatalities occurring, it’s vital that visitors are aware of how to stay safe.
To ensure you’re fully prepared, take a look at these four safety tips for staying safe on Tampa’s roads:
1. Expect Traffic Congestion
According to recent statistics, Tampa is the 12th most congested city in the entire U.S. With a congestion level of 21%, it’s advisable to add extra time to your journeys so that you aren’t in a rush to get to your destination. Furthermore, don’t attempt to ‘beat the traffic’ by taking risks. Instead, adjust your route to minimize delays and be prepared to wait a little longer if traffic builds up.
2. Familiarize Yourself with the Roads
A GPS system will certainly help you to get around while you’re visiting Tampa, but you can help to reduce your risk of accidents by familiarizing yourself with the roads before you get behind the wheel. If you have a vague idea of where you’re going and how to get there, you’ll be more confident on the road and less likely to breach any safety regulations.
3. Beware of Dangerous Intersections
As you might expect, some roads and intersections are more dangerous than others and it’s helpful to know which ones are the most hazardous. Identifying particularly dangerous intersections in Tampa, like the US 92 and I 275 or the Dale Mabry Highway and Waters Ave, will help to ensure you’re on your guard when you’re most at risk.
4. Look Before You Cross
It’s not just drivers who need to take extra care when navigating through the streets of Tampa; pedestrians need to be aware of the traffic too. In 2021, 655 traffic accidents in Tampa involved pedestrians, and 541 injuries were sustained. With pedestrians likely to suffer more serious injuries, it’s essential that visitors are aware of the risks and take precautions when exploring the city.
Responding to a Car Accident in Tampa
Despite your best efforts, you might find that you’re involved in a car accident or collision during your time in Tampa. If so, it’s important to know how to react. Accessing medical help, notifying the police and contacting a Tampa car accident lawyer are all advisable, for example. Similarly, notifying your insurance company and keeping hold of evidence relating to the incident can also be beneficial.
While Tampa is certainly a great place to visit, you’ll want to ensure your stay is memorable for the right reasons. By taking extra steps to reduce the risk of accidents and knowing how to respond if an incident does occur, you can boost your confidence, access help if you need it and make the most of your time in this wonderful location.