The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) has announced a new “education and enforcement campaign to ticket aggressive truck and car drivers” in an effort to make our Florida roads safer. The campaign will focus on education to raise awareness about safe driving behaviors and a stepped up law enforcement presence to ticket offenders.

According to the FHP press release, between Feb. 27 – 29 troopers statewide will be on the lookout for commercial truck and automobile drivers with driving behaviors attributed to aggressive driving such as: following too closely, unsafe lane change and speeding. In Florida, drivers can be cited for an aggressive driving traffic infraction if the driver violates any two of the following: unsafe or improper lane change, failure to yield right of way, speeding, improper passing, following too closely, and failure to obey traffic control devices.

The heart of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) mission is to keep families safe on America’s roadways. To support the mission, the agency continues to highlight the dangers of aggressive driving. The NHTSA notes that you may be an aggressive driver if you scream to yourself or at others to vent your frustration, tailgate, run red lights or go too fast for conditions to get around someone causing your frustration. The NHTSA suggests when drivers notice they are becoming aggressive they should concentrate, relax and slow down.

AAA notes that while “cumulative stressors” trigger aggressive drivers most of the time, offensive driving habits of other drivers, such as being cut off, can cause another driver to become aggressive. AAA Foundation President and CEO Peter Kissinger stated, “An aggressive driving act by one driver can trigger a disproportionate and potentially violent reaction from another driver.”

The car accident attorneys at Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney, have shown time and again that talking on a cell phone and driving do not mix. While distracted drivers are a danger to themselves and others on the road, they can also incite another driver to become aggressive. Statistics show that distracted drivers have slower reaction times, swerve, slow down or speed up at inappropriate times and may brake suddenly. When other drivers see that the person is talking on a cell phone, they often become frustrated and aggressive towards that person.

The NHTSA reports that nearly 5,500 fatalities and close to 500,000 injuries resulted from crashes involving a distracted driver in 2009. Careless driving was the leading cause of vehicle accidents in Florida last year, according to Florida’s 2010 crash statistics.

AAA states that as much as 56 percent of fatal vehicle crashes are linked to one or more dangerous driving behaviors generally associated with aggressive driving. The AAA also states that aggressive driving is one of America’s main traffic safety worries.

In 2010, 40 fatal accidents in Florida were attributed to drivers operating their vehicles in a careless, negligent, reckless or aggressive behavior. In addition, another 57 fatal accidents were attributed to speeding, failure to stop for stop signs or signals, following too closely or improper passing — all possible signs of aggressive driving. The FHP reports that in crashes involving cars and commercial trucks, actions by drivers account for 88 percent of the crashes.

The FHP has joined forces with the Florida Trucking Association on this campaign to conduct activities at schools and community centers around the state to educate drivers on how to share the road safely with trucks.

Our South Florida car accident attorneys encourage all residents and visitors to drive safely and defensively while on our Florida highways. Both aggressive and distracted driving have no place on our highways and only lead to tragedy. Remember to relax when driving and focus on arriving safely at your destination.

An Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help

The law firm of Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney, has provided professional and compassionate legal assistance to car accident victims in South Florida and the Treasure Coast since 1975. The firm sponsors a Facebook campaign to help end distracted driving entitled Hang Up and Drive! We believe that distracted driving is a life-threatening behavior that can be stopped.

If a distracted driver in Florida has injured you or someone you love, call us today at (800) 299-8878 or fill out our convenient online contact form for a free consultation.