Chief Jim Lee speaks at press conference.
To help prevent cars from crashing into canals on Florida's Turnpike, Florida's Turnpike Enterprise has implemented a 20.5 million dollar project to add barriers or guardrails along the Florida Turnpike's 308 miles of highway. The project will build guardrails in some areas and cable barriers in others, depending on the distance of the water from the roadway.
The Florida Legislature designated that the cable barriers be named after Alexander Ware, a boy from West Palm Beach who died in his mother's arms after their car crashed into a canal along the turnpike near Lake Worth in 2002. He was seven years old.
To kick-off the project, a press conference was held at the Palm Beach Service Plaza on the Florida Turnpike. Turnpike Executive Director James Ely, State Representative Irving Slosberg, Florida Highway Patrol Chief Jim Lee, and Julie Ware spoke to a group of reporters and journalists about the significance of the cable barrier installation program.
Troop K members attend press conference.
Several Troopers from Troop K attended the ceremonies to show support for the program that will hopefully improve the outcome of crashes for motorists using the Florida Turnpike.
The Cable Barrier Program is seen by troopers as a significant continuation of the Median Guardrail Program that was completed in May of 2005. That program has reduced the number of fatal crossover crashes by 90 percent on the turnpike.
The Florida Turnpike has long been seen as one of the most innovative and safest roadways in the nation. Patrolled by the men and women of the Florida Highway Patrol in Troop K, the 308 mile turnpike is traveled by an average of just over two million people daily.