As students throughout Central Florida prepare for a return to the classroom, local law enforcement…
Operation Best Foot Forward Steps Up to Curb from January 31 – February 10, 2023.
Sadly, it’s no secret that Central Florida drivers can be a bit reckless when it comes to yielding to pedestrians. But did you know that over half of drivers in Orange, Osceola, and Seminole Counties fail to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks within a quarter mile of schools? YIKES! That’s why the Best Foot Forward for Pedestrian Safety program (BFF) is teaming up with law enforcement agencies from across the region for a two-week enforcement operation called Operation Best Foot Forward
Starting on January 30 and going until February 10, 2023, plainclothes officers and deputies will be crossing the street at marked crosswalks, giving drivers the opportunity to slow down and stop safely. Drivers who don’t stop will be pulled over and face a minimum $164 citation and three points on their driver’s license.
This operation aligns with Crossing Guard Appreciation Day, which is taking place on February 3, 2023. It’s a day to honor the hardworking crossing guards who keep our kids safe on their way to and from school. One of our local heroes was honored for their efforts last year as the Florida Department of Transportation named Seminole County Crossing Guard Pat Alfonso the 2021 Florida Crossing Guard of the Year.
Participating Agencies Include:
- Orange County
- Orange County Sheriff’s Office
- Apopka Police Department
- Oakland Police Department
- Orlando Police Department
- Winter Park Police Department
- Osceola County
- Osceola County Sheriff’s Office
- Saint Cloud Police Department
- Kissimmee Police Department
- Seminole County
- Seminole County Sheriff’s Office
- Casselberry Police Department
- Longwood Police Department
The Best Foot Forward program is all about improving road safety through education, enforcement, and engineering updates. By combining these strategies over a sustained period, the program has seen a 25% increase in drivers yielding to pedestrians at crosswalks near schools. As Emily Hanna, Executive Director of Bike/Walk Central Florida, the nonprofit organization that administers the Best Foot Forward program, says, “That extra few seconds you take to slow down and pay attention through the school zone could save a life.” So, let’s all do our part to keep our kids and crossing guards safe by paying attention and slowing down in school zones and all of Central Florida’s roadways!