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FHP Gets High Marks
on the Opinion Survey

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Major Ken Howes or
Florida Highway Patrol

For Immediate Release

TALLAHASSEE - Upon his appointment as Director of the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) in March of 1998, Colonel Charles C. Hall made a commitment to ensure that Florida’s motoring public had a voice in setting the Patrol’s highway safety strategies. One specific task identified by Colonel Hall was to conduct a survey to determine how the Patrol is perceived and how the public prioritized current highway safety issues.

In August 1998, the Survey Research Laboratory at Florida State University conducted a mail survey of Florida licensed drivers. The survey contained three basic sections: measures of FHP’s professionalism, identifying and prioritizing highway safety issues, and basic demographic information from the respondent.

In February 1999, a total of 3,999 surveys were mailed out, with 1,333 going to each of FHP’s three regions. In March 1999, 1,162 surveys were mailed to a random sample of households that had not responded to the original mailing. A total of 996 completed surveys were returned. This produces a response rate of 30.2% for the State of Florida, with a per question precision of +/-3.00% and with a 95% confidence interval.

The Patrol scored very well on the measures of professionalism. FHP was given a favorable response by at least 73% of the respondents on all six measures. The highest rating was for Professional Appearance, with 93% of the respondents providing favorable responses. For those respondents that reported having contact with FHP in the past three years, 73% reported that the experience was positive or very positive. Percentage of favorable responses to the remaining four professionalism measures were as follows: Overall Job Performance/80.8%, Attitude of FHP Employees/75.2%, Job Competence of FHP Employees/84.0%, and Demeanor of FHP Employees/73.2%.

The three highway safety issues that respondents most often identified as needing additional emphasis by the Patrol were Aggressive Driving/Road Rage, DUI, and Speeding. Expected response times ranged from 12.1 minutes for a traffic crash with death or injury to 43.8 minutes for a stranded motorist. 92% of the respondents favored Florida’s mandatory helmet law for motorcyclists. Also, 65% of the respondents were in favor of raising the vehicle registration fee by $2 to provide for more troopers and equipment.

A copy of the final report is available on FHP's internet homepage: FHP Homepage. A complete set of data tables is available at the FSU Survey Research Laboratories internet homepage


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