Motorcycle Safety Series Part 19: Special Price Offered for Motorcycle Rider Safety Classes in August at State College of Florida in Bradenton

Attention motorcycle riders: State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) is offering its Basic Motorcycle Rider 1 class for a special price of $175 for its upcoming 16-hour class that will meet 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, August 12-13, 2015 at SCF, 5840 26th St. W., Bradenton.

SCF logo-thumb-184x120-60576Completion of SCF’s Basic Rider 1 – Riding and Street Skills satisfies the Florida Rider Training Program Basic Rider Course (BRC) requirement for obtaining a State of Florida driver license motorcycle endorsement or motorcycle only license.  Classes are taught by MSF and FRTP certified instructors and covers basic safety operations, effective braking techniques, turning skills, obstacle avoidance maneuvers and safe street-riding strategies.  SCF provides state-of-the-art facilities for the classroom part of the course and smooth parking lot surfaces for the riding portion.  Motorcycles and helmets are provided.  For more information or to register, call SCF Bradenton at 941-752-5203 or visit, where you can view the class schedule along with videos taken during the course.  Maps and directions are online at

Promoting motorcycle safety has always been a top priority of Heintz & Becker.  As part of our continuing commitment to motorcycle safety we have created the Heintz & Becker Motorcycle Safety Series which contains valuable safety tips and information for all of our readers.  We are also committed to providing expert legal representation to injured motorcyclists and their families.  Please call us for a free consultation if you or a member of your family has been hurt in a motorcycle accident caused by someone else’s carelessness.

Source(s):  SCF News, SCF Motorcycle Class Page

FSU Study of Distraction Caused by Cell Phone

“Shocking” is the word used by one of the FSU research coordinators who worked on a study to see how  distracted a person can become when they get a notification on their cell phone.  FSU researchers suspect that upon getting a notification – even if the recipient lets it go and does nothing else – the recipient, knowing that they missed a call or have a text message waiting for them, shifts their attention to what they may have missed and momentarily stops focusing on the task at hand.

FSU CrestFSU called its study “The Attentional Cost of Receiving a Cell Notification.”  The first study of its kind, it has now been published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance.  During the study, researchers were shocked to discover that merely receiving a notification but not responding can be just as distracting as actually answering the phone or replying to a text message.  While many public safety campaigns simply advise drivers to “ignore” phone notifications while driving and wait until later to respond to messages and calls, the results of the FSU study suggest that may not be enough to avoid distraction and that the safest practice would be to turn off cell phones while behind the wheel.

Even a slight distraction while driving can lead to devastating consequences.  The problem has become so common that after an accident, one of the first questions now being asked it whether any of the drivers had been using their phones, GPS systems and other devices.  The attorneys at Heintz & Becker strongly advise everyone to take heed of the results of this latest study and TURN OFF your phones and other devices while driving.  We also wish to thank the researchers at Florida State University for their important work and the potentially lifesaving information coming out of their study.

We encourage you to contact the accident attorneys at Heintz & Becker if you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident involving a distracted or impaired driver.  Our attorneys are available to consult with you about your case and will provide a free analysis of your claim and rights to seek compensation for your injuries and damages.

Source(s): Florida State University, “Cell phone alerts may be driving you to distraction”, posted July 9, 2015; Science Daily, “Cell phone notifications may be driving you to distraction”, posted July 9, 2015

Distracted Florida Driver Jumps Partially Open Drawbridge!

By Steve Heintz of Heintz & Becker

Palm Beach resident James Montano crashed through the flashing gates and jumped a small gap of an open drawbridge on the Flagler Memorial Bridge in Palm Beach, Florida on Sunday, June 28, 2015.  After the event he reportedly told a law enforcement officer that he failed to see that the bridge was opening because he had been distracted by his GPS.  No Kidding – it really happened. And there’s a video of the whole thing.

Luckily, Montano was not injured. Officers cited him for reckless driving and the bridge was closed for five hours for repairs.  The accounts of the incident and comments that followed are full of comparisons of Montano’s jump to those of the Blues Brothers and Dukes of Hazzard – as well as plenty of jokes about Florida drivers.  But, could it be that these clever comments and jokes are just another form of distraction to avoid acknowledging how serious this accident could have been?  All joking aside, this could have ended much, much worse.

Heintz & Becker is posting this information to remind everyone of the serious dangers of letting oneself become distracted while behind the wheel and to ask drivers to pull over while using their phones, GPS systems and other devices.  If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident involving a distracted or impaired driver, the experienced accident attorneys at Heintz & Becker are available to consult with you about your case and rights to seek financial compensation.  We urge you to contact us for a free analysis of your claim.

Source(s): Orlando Weekly, “A distracted Florida driver actually jumped an open drawbridge”, posted July 1, 2015;,  “Distracted driver ‘playing with his GPS’ misses signs and JUMPS car over drawbridge as it is rising”, posted July 2, 2015