News

2016

Travel Safely this Holiday Season And Arrive Alive

~DHSMV launches Holiday Travel Campaign to educate travelers on Florida’s roads on safe driving~

Holiday Travel LogoTALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) today launched its Holiday Travel Campaign to remind motorists the importance of taking extra care on Florida’s roadways this holiday season. Millions of Floridians and visitors are expected to travel on Florida roads over the next two months, and DHSMV is partnering with the Florida Sheriffs Association, Florida Police Chiefs Association and the American Automobile Association (AAA) to ensure all travelers Arrive Alive.

Throughout the months of November and December, DHSMV will be educating Floridians and visitors on safe driving behaviors while on Florida’s roadways, such as buckling up, slowing down, driving sober and eliminating distractions.

“There will undoubtedly be increased traffic on Florida’s roads this Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year holidays and it is important for motorists to be even more focused while behind the wheel,” said DHSMV Executive Director Terry L. Rhodes. “Motorists should eliminate distractions and always keep their eyes on the road, hands on the wheel and mind on driving to help ensure they Arrive Alive.”

During the 2015 holiday season, law enforcement agencies statewide worked more than 20,000 crashes. Tragically, 196 people died during that time frame as a result of those crashes. Of those fatalities, 42 percent were drug and alcohol related. Alcohol reduces all of the crucial skills necessary to drive safely, such as judgment, reaction time, vision and concentration. Celebrate responsibly this holiday season. If you are going to be drinking, plan ahead by designating a sober driver or calling a ride service.

“The Florida Highway Patrol would like to wish everyone a happy holiday season,” said Colonel Gene S. Spaulding, Director of the Florida Highway Patrol. “We encourage everyone to drive responsibly and not mix alcohol and driving to ensure you and your families enjoy this joyous time of year.”

Over 20 percent of the crashes during the 2015 holiday season involved people not using their seat belts. Motorists should always buckle up and make sure everyone in the vehicle has the proper restraint secured at all times while driving. Seat belts save lives.

“As the holidays approach, we all have to keep safety top of mind,” said Amy Stracke, Managing Director, Traffic Safety Advocacy, AAA – The Auto Club Group. “Safety in your vehicle starts with your seat belt. It’s critical to buckle up on every ride and ask passengers to do the same.”

“The holiday season is always a cherished time of the year when families travel to visit their loved ones,” said Orange County Sheriff Jerry L. Demings, the President of the Florida Sheriffs Association. “On behalf of our Florida Sheriffs, I fully endorse and support the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles’ initiative to educate our citizens and their guests about traffic safety. Happy Holidays and stay safe!”

DHSMV also reminds drivers to follow all rules of the road, especially all posted speed limits. Throughout Florida, the limit will never be higher than 70 mph. Motorists may need to adjust accordingly as traffic congestion and weather conditions may require driving more slowly this time of the year.

“As we travel during the holidays to visit family and friends, it’s important we make it a safe season on the road,” said Coconut Creek Police Chief Butch Arenal, President of the Florida Police Chiefs Association. “Please help our law enforcement officers keep you safe by obeying the rules of the road.”

The public is encouraged to report aggressive or impaired drivers by dialing *FHP (*347) and check traffic conditions before departing for their trip. For more information and additional travel information, visit: www.flhsmv.gov/holidaytravel

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles provides highway safety and security through excellence in service, education and enforcement. The Department is leading the way to a safer Florida through the efficient and professional execution of its core mission: the issuance of driver licenses, vehicle tags and titles and operation of the Florida Highway Patrol. To learn more about DHSMV and the services offered, visit www.flhsmv.gov, follow us on Twitter @FLHSMV or find us on Facebook. For safe driving tips and techniques, download the official Florida Driver License Handbook.