The Florida Highway Patrol issued more than eight citations per hour during Operation I-95 Saturation last week.
In response to public complaints about a lack of enforcement on 95 in Miami-Dade County, FHP roughly doubled its enforcement Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., expanding the hours from the originally planned 10-to-4 timeframe.
Before the operation, FHP named speeding and aggressive driving as particular areas of focus. While almost 20 percent of the 412 total citations were issued for speeding, FHP issued just three tickets for aggressive driving -- the same number as was issued for illegal window tinting.
“Based on the high visibility and troopers on I-95,” says Trooper Joe Sanchez, “I think people got the message... They were driving not in an aggressive manner.”
Sanchez, who is spokesman for the FHP in Miami-Dade County, said drivers behaved noticeably better during 95 Saturation and expects there to be a measurable impact on the number of accidents.
According to the operation's “Selective Enforcement Activity Report," the most common violations related to speeding (77 citations issued), seat belts (40) commercial-vehicle issues (40) and proof of insurance (35).
Were it not for bouts of inclement weather and a visit from Vice President Joe Biden, Sanchez said the number of citations would have been higher.
Resources allowing, FHP is interested in replicating the program and possibly even expanding it in the future.
“We talked about even doing it at night,” said Sanchez, “That’s when people really tend to open up on I-95. And we’re going to be looking at putting something together to target the late hours on I-95.”
The End of the Road is WLRN’s ongoing series about I-95. See all of the coverage here.