Major Ernesto Duarte
Florida Highway Patrol
For Release December 21, 2006:
Tallahassee – Colonel Chris Knight, Director of the Florida Highway Patrol, announced today the FHP’s statewide traffic enforcement plans for the upcoming Christmas and New Year’s holidays. FHP will implement zero tolerance enforcement strategies targeting aggressive and hazardous violations throughout the state. Troopers will place special emphasize on aggressive driving, D.U.I, speed, and safety restraint violations. The Patrol is also reminding the public about the risks of walking and bicycling in close proximity to traffic. Prudent interaction and adherence to laws by motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians would prevent many of the deaths that occur each year on Florida roadways.
This year’s Christmas holiday period will begin at 00:01 hours on Saturday, December 23, 2006, and end at midnight, Monday, December 25, 2006. The New Year’s holiday period will begin at 00:01 hours on Saturday, December 30, 2005, and end at midnight, Monday, January 1, 2006.
Last year, 40 people were killed in 35 traffic crashes during the 72-hour Christmas holiday period. Also, 29 people were killed in 29 traffic crashes during the 72-hour New Year’s holiday.
As in the past, Colonel Knight has instructed all available troopers and supervisors to discontinue office duties, and heavily patrol interstates, major state roads, and Florida’s Turnpike throughout both holiday periods.
Motorists are urged to contact the FHP or local law enforcement officials when reporting an impaired, aggressive, or dangerous driver (to reach the Florida Highway Patrol, simply dial *FHP (*347) from a cellular phone. Callers can remain anonymous. Motorists who experience car trouble on the highway or otherwise need assistance from the FHP are also encouraged to use *FHP. For real-time traffic and road condition reports, as well as maps and other safety tips, the public is urged to visit the FHP website at www.flhsmv.gov/fhp.
Florida drivers can also call 511 for up-to-the minute updates on traffic jams, road construction, lane closures, severe weather and travel times on Interstates and major highways.
2006 NEW YEAR HOLIDAY TRAFFIC FATALITIES
2005 CHRISTMAS HOLIDAY TRAFFIC FATALITIES