Chief Ken Howes or
Florida Highway Patrol
For Immediate Release:
TALLAHASSEE: Colonel Chris Knight, Director of the Florida Highway Patrol, today announced plans for "Operation Safe Break", scheduled for March 1 through April 13, 2003, to coincide with spring break activities throughout Florida.
Historically, March and April have been the peak months each year for traffic crashes in Florida. These two months correspond with several special events in Florida, which increase traffic volumes and the types of travel that are more likely to lead to traffic fatalities. A series of events, actually beginning in February, cause an increase in travel in several parts of the state. Bike Week and race weeks in Daytona Beach, Spring Break, and Easter vacations all increase the number of tourists and the amount of leisure travel. Add to this the onset of the northern migration of the state's "seasonal" population and the scene is set for major traffic problems. Leisure travel is a particular problem because it tends to include more drinking and driving, and long distance driving, which often leads to fatigue. Spring break activities begin in March and with them come a phenomenal increase in traffic on major highways throughout this state.
In an effort to provide the citizens and visitors of Florida with a safe driving environment during this period, the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) will be conducting "Operation Safe Break" details in all ten field troops statewide. "Through the use of selective enforcement details and multi-agency participation, we hope to experience a safer spring break period this year," said Colonel Knight. Troop Commanders have solicited the support of local law enforcement agencies for this enforcement initiative.
Each FHP field troop has planned different enforcement activities for the duration of Operation Safe Break; however, the overall goals of the initiative are the same:
To reduce traffic deaths, injuries, and property damage attributed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic.
To aggressively enforce all laws related to traffic flow.
To reduce criminal activities occurring on targeted roadways through detection, prevention, and aggressive enforcement.
To create a safer driving environment through public education concerning safety belt usage, awareness of driving under the influence, and the hazards of speeding.
To maintain high visibility patrol and assist the motoring public, while ensuring the safety of those traveling our highways.