Florida Highway Patrol urging travelers to drive safe during the holiday

Florida Highway Patrol urging travelers to drive safe during the holiday
Published: Nov. 19, 2023 at 11:33 PM CST
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CALHOUN COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - The roads are soon to be slammed as we approach the Thanksgiving holiday.

“Be aware of your surroundings and prepare yourself accordingly for travel,” said Lieutenant Jason King, with Florida Highway Patrol.

King says safety is their number one priority. AAA estimates that around 55.7 million people will be traveling this year and almost 50 million of them will be getting behind the wheel.

Florida Highway Patrol says in 2022 during the five-day Thanksgiving period Wednesday through Sunday there were around 4500 crashes on Florida roads. We are told the most crashes occurred the day before Thanksgiving.

“We see just about everything increase during the holiday season lack of seatbelts use, speed increase reckless driving, aggressive driving, people get agitated they’re in a hurry and want to get to their destination,” said King.

With more people in a hurry, there are more crashes on the road.

“Speeding is one of the major culprits, people get aggressive they get impatient on this long stretch of two-lane highway, they want to go pass improperly, they want to speed and tailgate,” said King. “So, it is a lot of things are happening at one time and that is what leads to crashes.”

FHP officials say it is not about getting to the destination quickly it is about arriving safely.

“Bring awareness and education and sometimes that education is through enforcement and writing a citation but it’s to save your life,” said King.

They are making sure everyone has a safe holiday season.