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Texting And Driving Becomes a Primary Offense July 1, 2019

Texting And Driving Becomes a Primary Offense July 1, 2019

Texting and Driving becomes a primary offense today, July 1, 2019. With having a cellphone that can be as powerful as a computer, comes the dangers of always being connected to anything you need to know. The cellphone can text, search the internet, and let you visually talk to people through the camera. The inherent dangers are obvious for drivers. Drivers can be distracted by their devices, which can lead to serious or deadly consequences.

Think what you want, but AAA research shows people who text and driver are eight times more likely to be involved in a crash. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reported more than 51,000 crashes involving distracted drivers statewide last year. The number of traffic fatalities in Florida has topped 3,000 each year since 2016.

The new law advances Florida’s rule against texting while driving in a couple of ways. First, it makes texting (including messaging, emailing and other forms of typing on a mobile device) a primary violation, rather than a secondary violation. That means officers can stop you solely on suspicion of texting while driving. Next, it more broadly bans any use of a handheld cell phone while operating a motor vehicle in a designated school crossing or school zone or a road work zone. Hands-free uses remain legal.

Violations of the new law will carry a $30 (plus court costs), non-moving traffic violation (no points $113 fine) for a first offense. Second and subsequent moving violations within 5 years rise to a $60 fine (plus court costs) and a moving violation carrying 3 points ($163 fine) on your driver’s license. Insurance companies may take note of violations of the new law and raise your rates. Despite the new law being in effect as of July 1st, officers will issue warnings for the new law (a six-month education period) up until January 1st 2020, when traffic citations carrying these penalties will then be issued. The previously mentioned school zones and construction zones will begin a warning education period on October 1st 2019, with citations commencing along with the rest of the new law on January 1st.  ANY OFFENSE for not using a device hands-free in a school zone and work zone under section 316.306, Florida Statutes is a moving traffic violation, with a base $60 fine (plus court costs), and 3 points ($163 fine) assessed against the driver license.

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CAPE CORAL POLICE DEPARTMENT | Public Affairs Office | 1100 Cultural Park Boulevard | Cape Coral, FL 33990 | (239) 242-3341

Don't Get Arrested For DUI On Independence Day

Don't Get Arrested For DUI On Independence Day

Independence Day is a time to celebrate with friends and family. Most people either go to or will have a cook out or party. If you are going to drink alcoholic beverages, the Cape Coral Police Department would ask you to not drive if you are impaired. There are many ride sharing apps and taxis that will be willing to take you home safely. It is a lot cheaper to pay for a ride home from the party, then a ride home from jail.

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CAPE CORAL POLICE DEPARTMENT | Public Affairs Office | 1100 Cultural Park Boulevard | Cape Coral, FL 33990 | (239) 242-3341

Traffic Tuesday - Traffic Control Patterns

Traffic Tuesday - Traffic Control Patterns

Traffic Tuesday! For this Traffic Tuesday we will be focusing on traffic control patterns with traffic cones, traffic barrels, and traffic channelizers.

We have a lot of construction in the north end of Cape Coral with the Utility Expansion Project (UEP). With that comes different traffic control patterns that must be obeyed. While the UEP work continues everyone that lives in the area, or at least traveled through, have seen the major traffic pattern changes. Be aware of these changes and take extra time to get to your destination. If you don’t have to go through that area, avoid it until the construction is completed.

The picture below may look like a screenshot from a late 80’s arcade game but in reality the different types of traffic control devices used are NOT worth points if you hit them. It may seem like it by them getting hit and knocked over so frequently. There is only a high score if you get to your destination safely without hitting anything or anyone! Please use caution, slow down in construction areas, be aware of your surroundings, watch for workers and pedestrians in the area, and as always….DON’T drive impaired.

Speeding in a work zone has enhanced penalties under 316.183, and is a violation as a noncriminal traffic infraction punishable as a moving violation.

Driving around, through, or over a traffic control device is under State Statute 316.074 and a violation is a noncriminal traffic infraction punishable as a moving violation.

Traffic Crash weekly summary:

Monday June 3rd through Sunday June 9th, 2019, there were 85 traffic crashes worked by the Cape Coral Police Department.

REMINDER: If you have traffic concerns, you can submit them here: www.capecops.com/traffic. Your concern will be routed directly to the Traffic Unit for follow-up. Please be as detailed as possible to include things like days of week, times you are seeing the issue, or specific cars (if it is a particular vehicle with which you are having an issue).

This is NOT a game. Drive safely!

This is NOT a game. Drive safely!

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CAPE CORAL POLICE DEPARTMENT | Public Affairs Office | 1100 Cultural Park Boulevard | Cape Coral, FL 33990 | (239) 242-3341