Give the Gift of Safety: Buckle Up This Holiday Season

buckle up holiday 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) will be helping ensure all motorists Arrive Alive, by reminding them to buckle up, eliminate distractions and never drive impaired. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) also urges motorists to maintain a road-ready vehicle and register Emergency Contact Information (ECI) ahead of holiday travels.

“As you prepare to spend Thanksgiving with your loved ones, remember there are FHP troopers and law enforcement officers statewide spending the holiday working to keep Florida’s roadways safe,” said FLHSMV Executive Director, Terry L. Rhodes. “Do your part by always buckling up and never driving impaired.”

In 2018, preliminarily, there were 9,896 crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday period, with 79 resulting fatalities. According to AAA – The Auto Club Group, 2.6 million Floridians are forecast to be driving during the Thanksgiving holiday, leading to higher volumes of traffic on roadways. From November 25 to 29 all available FHP troopers, along with FHP reserve and auxiliary members, will be patrolling the roads to help ensure safe travel.

“The Florida Highway Patrol is committed to keeping Florida’s roadways safe and ensuring motorists and their families Arrive Alive,” said Colonel Gene S. Spaulding, Director of the Florida Highway Patrol. “Celebrate responsibly and never drive impaired, eliminate distractions and get plenty of rest before you drive this holiday season.”

This Thanksgiving, motorists are also reminded to obey all speed limits and adjust speed accordingly as traffic congestion and weather conditions may require driving more slowly. Check traffic conditions before leaving for a trip and allow sufficient time to arrive at your destination safely. FLHSMV reminds motorists to always keep their eyes on the road, hands on the wheel and mind on driving. On July 1, 2019, using wireless communications while driving became a primary driving offense and Florida motorists can now be stopped and cited for texting and driving. The Wireless Communications While Driving Law will go into full effect on January 1, in which a motorist may be stopped and cited for using a wireless communications device while driving and/or failing to use a device hands-free in a school zone, school crossing or active work zone.

The FLHSMV is continuing the Safe Holiday Travel campaign, educating Floridians and visitors on safe traveling behaviors such as never driving impaired, focusing on driving, and registering their Emergency Contact Information (ECI). Additionally, the FLHSMV is informing consumers of their rights and responsibilities when it comes to buying and selling a vehicle. FLHSMV is partnering with the Florida Department of Transportation, Florida Sheriffs Association, Florida Police Chiefs Association, and AAA – The Auto Club Group to urge responsible driving and consumer habits.

The public is encouraged to report aggressive or impaired drivers by dialing FHP (347) and check traffic conditions before departing for their trip by visiting For more information, including downloadable Road Trip Checklist & Safety Tips, visit:

he Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) provides highway safety and security through excellence in service, education, and enforcement. FL 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 FLHSMV and the services offered, visit, follow us on Twitter @FLHSMV, find us on Facebook or follow us on Instagram.

This year, the FLHSMV celebrates its 50th anniversary and its Division of the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) commemorates its 80th year. Learn more at

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