driving

The End of the Road
9:38 am
Mon August 4, 2014

How A Driving Instructor Teaches Floridians To Take I-95

Credit Kenny Malone

(Take this quiz based off of driving instructor Chris Pearson's own tricks and advice as well as Florida's state driving manual.)

"I-95 driving is not for the timid or the meek," driving instructor Chris Pearson says. The former cop says new drivers are so scared of I-95 that he has essentially made it his final exam. Or maybe more accurately his final pop quiz.

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The End of the Road
4:17 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Trying To Free Up 95 Express, FDOT Prices 'Lexus Lanes' At Lamborghini Rates

Credit Jeffery Katz / Florida Department of Transportation

“Lexus lanes” may have been too cheap for Miami. This past Saturday morning, South Florida drivers traded in for “Lamborghini lanes.”

The maximum possible toll on the 95 Express lanes increased from $7.00 to $10.50 — the mininum has doubled to 50 cents — in response to record numbers of motorists forking over what was thought to be a discouragingly high amount of money.

“That day you paid seven bucks, we were trying to get you not to go there,” said Rory Santana, who oversees Miami-Dade County’s stretch of 95 Express for the Florida Department of Transportation.

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The End of the Road
2:54 pm
Sun February 23, 2014

How Madonna Shaped My Romance With I-95

Mark, left, and Clark.
Credit Clark Perks

In 1990, when we were both 22 years old, my friend Clark and I drove from New Jersey to the Canadian border, bought a box of donuts, turned the car around, and drove the entire length of the southbound Interstate 95 non-stop, as quickly as possible. It was what we called a “high-velocity vacation."

For reasons unclear we decided to only listen to one song the entire way: Madonna’s “Like A Prayer.” We had the cassingle.

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The End Of The Road
1:30 am
Mon January 13, 2014

Devilish Commute: How South Florida Lives With I-95

Nearly 2,000 miles of human accomplishment end unceremoniously near Coconut Grove.
Credit Gregory Castillo / Miami Herald

The U.S. Census 2006-2010 American Communities Survey says the most popular commute is, by far, from Broward to Miami-Dade County. It estimates 125,000 make that drive to work every day.

For nearly an hour and a half, Broward-to-Dade commuters sit on Interstate 95's crowded lanes, some investing in express-lane tolls while others face the red-eyed inertia of cars ahead.

One commuter says of her peers' brake lights: “Look at them. Red little demon eyes stopping you in your tracks. Interfering with your making a living."

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Transportation
8:23 pm
Thu December 19, 2013

Express-Lane Congestion Elicits Toll Hikes On I-95

Credit Xemenendura / Wikimedia Commons

Life in the fast lane is more popular, more expensive and more congested than ever.

The Florida Department of Transportation says entry into the 95 Express lanes ranges from $0.25 to a $7.00 maximum, meaning drivers can only be charged up to that amount depending on how many tolls they pass on one trip. The system’s "dynamic tolling" increases prices as the lanes get more congested. By driving up prices, traffic is driven back into the general-purpose lanes, easing congestion on the express lanes.

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News
12:59 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Florida Drivers Can Soon Use Smartphones To Show Proof Of Insurance

Proof of auto insurance will soon be as close as your smart phone.
Credit samsungtomorrow/flickr

Florida drivers are required to carry proof of insurance.

Those who are pulled over in Miami-Dade County and can’t show proof of coverage will get a $129 ticket. (It drops to $10 if proof is provided with 30 days that the driver had insurance at the time of the citation.)

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Politics
9:44 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Local Police Gear Up To Enforce Florida's New Texting While Driving Ban

Enforcing the texting ban might prove difficult.
Credit Creative Commons Via Flickr user Steven Damron

As Florida's texting while driving ban goes into effect, local police officers are still figuring out the best way to enforce the new law.

"This is something new to all of us," said Freddy Cruz, a sergeant with the City of Miami Police Department. "This is going to be quite a challenge, but from an educational standpoint, we have to educate the public on the dangers [of texting while driving].

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Law
6:00 am
Tue October 1, 2013

Florida's Texting While Driving Ban Takes Effect Amid New Effort To Strengthen It

Despite the new ban on texting while driving, some say the law lacks real teeth.
Credit Creative Commons via Wikipedia User Ed Brown

Florida's new law banning texting while driving went into effect on October 1.

Governor Rick Scott signed SB 52 into law back in May, making Florida the 41st state to ban texting while driving. To some, though, the law does not go far enough.

The brunt of the new law is meant to deter drivers from sending or reading text messages. But it bans pretty much anything that requires "manually typing or entering multiple letters, numbers, symbols, or other characters." So no emailing, searching the Internet, or dialing a phone number.

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Transportation
10:50 am
Mon September 30, 2013

Florida's New Texting While Driving Ban Takes Effect Oct. 1

Experts say that texting while driving makes you 23 times more likely to get into an accident.
Credit IntelFreePress/Flickr

It's official. No more texting and driving in the state of Florida.

Gov. Rick Scott was in South Florida on Tuesday to sign SB 52, legislation championed by Sen. Nancy Detert (R-Venice) for the last four years. 

Under the new law, Florida will join a large majority of states in prohibiting texting while driving. As a secondary offense, however, drivers must be stopped for a separate alleged traffic violation before being ticketed for texting while driving. 

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Texting Ban
3:40 pm
Wed May 8, 2013

Simulator Offers Crash Course On Dangers Of Texting

"It Can Wait" Tour Manager Griffin Hagler shows 16-year-old Park Vista High School student Webster Jean how to work AT&T's Texting-While-Driving Simulator.
Credit C. DiMattei

Sixteen-year-old Webster Jean is driving around on city streets, left hand on the wheel, right hand holding a smartphone.  As he reads and responds to his text messages, he repeatedly veers across the double-yellow lines.

And then --  wham.

"I crashed,"  says Jean with a chuckle.

Jean tee-bones another car – but he’s fine.  The teenager is just taking a spin in a texting-while-driving simulator brought to Park Vista High School by wireless carrier AT&T. 

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Journalism
6:00 am
Fri April 19, 2013

Pursuing Reckless Cops Wins Sun-Sentinel Its First Pulitzer

Sun-Sentinel Investigative Reporter Sally Kestin
Credit Christine DiMattei

It was a humdinger of a story.

A Miami police officer in a marked squad car is pursued, pulled over and handcuffed by a Florida state trooper after speeding down the turnpike like race car driver Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

A dash-cam video of that pre-dawn October chase in 2011 went viral and sparked a three-month investigation by the South Florida Sun-Sentinel newspaper into how local police officers routinely endangered the general public through reckless driving.

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Politics
6:00 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Technically, There's Nothing Stopping You From Texting And Driving In Florida – Yet

Florida is one of only 11 states that doesn't prohibit texting and driving. But drivers whose texting leads to an accident and death would be guilty of homicide under a bill filed this week in the Senate and expected to soon show up in the House.
Credit poka0059 / Flickr

After several failed bills and a decade’s worth of debate, texting and driving remains legal in Florida – and the most recently proposed bill wouldn’t change that. But drivers could be charged with vehicular homicide in the case of an accident.

According to the News Service of Florida,

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Red Light Cameras On School Buses?
12:30 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

This Bill Could Mean Tickets From School Buses

Rep. Ed Hooper, R-Clearwater filed a bill in the House on Tuesday that would allow school districts to install cameras on school buses. This is an attempt to identify drivers who illegally pass buses when children are boarding.
Credit Arvind Balaraman / freedigitalphotos.net

A familiar yellow school bus slows to pick up a group of giddy children at the corner. Florida drivers, perhaps caught in the morning rush to work, know they’re supposed to stop. After all, the bus’s retractable red stop sign and flashing lights serve as glaring reminders. But are motorists actually following the law?

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Public Insight Network
11:00 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Texting While Driving And Other Sins Of Florida's Drivers

39 states - including libertarian-leaning New Hampshire - ban texting while driving. Florida isn't one of them.
Credit taestell

Florida is one of only 11 states that does not prohibit texting while driving.  Though state legislators have already introduced 3 texting ban bills for the upcoming session, similar bills have failed in the past several years. 

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The Florida Roundup
12:00 pm
Fri January 25, 2013

Is Florida Driving Us Crazy?

Florida is one of only 11 states that don't have a ban on texting while driving.
Credit JASElabs

On the Florida Roundup: From immigration reform to gay rights, we’ll discuss how the president’s inauguration speech resonated here.  

The Dolphins win the first battle in their fight for public funding to renovate Sun Life Stadium, with the Miami-Dade County Commission agreeing to ask the state for an increase in the hotel tax.  But Florida state lawmakers might not be receptive.

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