Florida has rolled out an aggressive new campaign targeted at decreasing the number of traffic deaths in the state, which have steadily been rising since 2014. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FDHSMV) announced in mid-January the launch of the Florida Highway Patrol’s “Arrive Alive” campaign to curb Florida’s rising traffic fatalities.
Statistics from the Florida Highway Patrol show a jump in the state’s traffic deaths in 2016 with 3,062 traffic fatalities, up from 2,942 in 2015 and 2,497 in 2014. Through Jan. 30 of this year, there have already been 143 traffic fatalities. Florida isn’t the only sate seeing traffic fatality increases. Traffic fatalities nationwide rose 7.2 percent between 2014 and 2015, the largest uptick in nearly 50 years, according to a report released Jan. 31 by the Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety (Advocates). The group says preliminary data also shows an 8 percent increase through the first nine months of 2016 over the same time period in 2015.
Still, Advocates “2017 Roadmap of State Highway Safety Laws” identified Florida as one of the worst states when it comes to its number of laws addressing safety on the roads. The Advocates report says Florida is missing a rear primary enforcement seat belt law, all rider-motorcycle helmet law, booster seat law, five of the seven teen driving provisions it recommends, an ignition interlock law, and an all-driver text messaging restriction.
While Florida’s Arrive Alive campaign doesn’t push for the enacting of new road safety laws, FHP and partnering agencies’ will focus on law enforcement presence, education and/or engineering efforts in locations where fatal and serious bodily injury crashes are most frequent, FDHSMV said.
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