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The original item was published from 7/26/2021 1:35:24 PM to 7/28/2021 12:00:05 PM.

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Posted on: July 26, 2021

[ARCHIVED] Law Enforcement of Driver Yield Law Prior to Back-to-School

Apopka Police Patch Logo. Media Release

Media Advisory from Best Foot Forward

Eight agencies to enforce Florida’s driver yield laws in two-day Operation Best Foot Forward

ORLANDO, Florida - July 24, 2021 - Before more than 340,000 students head back to school in Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties, law enforcement agencies will remind drivers that they must stop for people in crosswalks. Deputies from Orange and Seminole counties sheriffs’ offices will join officers with Orlando, Apopka, Kissimmee, St. Cloud, Casselberry and Oakland police departments to conduct a pre-back-to-school Operation Best Foot Forward on July 27 & 28, 2021.

Operation Best Foot Forward is a high-visibility enforcement action to remind drivers about Florida’s driver yield law. At each detail, plainclothes officers will cross streets at marked crosswalks, giving motorists enough time to yield. Failing to yield may warrant a warning or a minimum $164 citation and three (3) points on the driver’s license. Studies show that when you combine engineering, education and enforcement over a prolonged period of time, driver behavior changes.

Most of the crosswalks selected for the July operation are in close proximity to schools where children will soon need to cross. Included in the back-to-school operations are:

  • Pine Hills Rd. & El Trio Way in Orange County is near Evans High School with only 28% of drivers yielding to pedestrians and where a resident was hit and killed earlier this year.
  • 5th St. & S. Park Ave. in Apopka will be the first location enforced as part of the City’s participation in the Best Foot Forward program. Apopka recently added advanced warning signs to give drivers notice that they must stop for pedestrians.
  • Millenia Blvd. & Timarron Dr. in Orlando is directly in front of Millenia Gardens Elementary School where only 1 out of 10 drivers stopped for people trying to cross in this crosswalk in a July study.
  • Snow Hill Rd. & Jacobs Trail in Seminole County is where only 10% of drivers are yielding to pedestrians in this crosswalk by Walker Elementary School and the Flagler Trailhead.

View the Interactive Google Map of All Best Foot Forward Locations.

About Best Foot Forward for Pedestrian Safety Program

The Best Foot Forward for pedestrian safety program is administered by the local non-profit Bike/Walk Central Florida and first launched by MetroPlan Orlando, Orange County and the City of Orlando in 2012. It expanded to Osceola County, Kissimmee and St. Cloud in 2017 and Seminole County and Casselberry in October 2019. The cities of Apopka and Oakland most recently joined the coalition.

Best Foot Forward was created to reverse the conflict between pedestrians and drivers by focusing on one specific behavior change - getting more drivers to yield for pedestrians at marked crosswalks as Florida law requires. More than a campaign, Best Foot Forward is a behavior change-based program designed to improve road safety through consistent and persistent education, high-visibility crosswalk enforcement and low-cost engineering at marked crosswalks near elementary schools and LYNX bus stops, in urban areas and cross-sections of low and high-speed roads.

Best Foot Forward program progress: 2012 - June 2021

  • Operating in three counties, Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties
  • More than 10,300 citations and warnings issued since 2012
  • 186 crosswalks enforced by law enforcement
  • 44 percent increase - average yielding behavior change at those crosswalks being tracked by Best Foot Forward

Covering Orange, Osceola and now Seminole Counties, Best Foot Forward is the largest grassroots coalition focused on pedestrian safety in the nation. Since 2012, when Best Foot Forward was launched, the percentage of drivers yielding to people in marked crosswalks has increased from 17% to more than 60% on roads with a speed limit of 35 mph and lower and 2% to 43% on roads 40 mph and higher.

About Bike/Walk Central Florida, Administers the Best Foot Forward Program

Bike/Walk Central Florida (BWCF) is a 501(c)(3) that promotes walkable and bikeable communities through raising public awareness and advocating for safe, active transportation and recreation.

BWCF manages the Best Foot Forward for pedestrian safety program for its partners in Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties. Best Foot Forward is a behavior change-based program designed to improve road safety through consistent and persistent education, high-visibility enforcement and low-cost engineering at marked crosswalks. Best Foot Forward was launched in Orange County in June 2012. It more recently expanded into Osceola County in 2017 and Seminole County in 2019. Best Foot Forward is one of the largest grassroots programs of its kind in the nation.

BWCF coordinates the Bike5Cities program and its annual bike ride to promote safe bicycling routes and enhanced multi-use trails throughout Central Florida. The organization supports building, expanding and linking regional trails and completing Coast-to-Coast Connector trail. BWCF encourages transportation corridor planning and design by using Complete Streets principles for the benefit of all transportation users.

To learn more, go to http://bikewalkcentralflorida.org or http://iyield4peds.org

Best Foot Forward: Florida's Driver Yield Law
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