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Pedestrian Crosses OBT in Orange County

With Higher Risk for Pedestrians with Disabilities, Enforcement Operation Highlights “Inclusive Streets” Practices

Download the PDF Press Release Here

PRESS RELEASE
February 19, 2022
Eric Trull, Best Foot Forward
Mobile: 407.569.8993

Ten agencies to conduct three-day crosswalk enforcement operation
in Orange, Osceola, and Seminole Counties

ORLANDO, Fla. (February 19, 2021) – Law enforcement agencies across Central Florida are stepping up patrols at local crosswalks for a three-day crackdown on drivers who fail to yield and stop for pedestrians in marked crosswalks. Deputies from Orange County Sheriff’s Office, Osceola County, and Seminole County Sheriff’s Office, as well as officers from the Orlando, Kissimmee, Longwood, Oakland, Casselberry, Apopka, and St. Cloud Police Departments will enforce crosswalks on February 22-23 and March 3.

This enforcement aims to educate Central Florida motorists about their role in protecting road users with disabilities, be it physical, intellectual, or visual. Research shows that crashes involving those who are disabled are more likely to result in a fatality, putting the more than 55 million people in the U.S. who have a disability at risk. A nationwide study examining crashes from 2006 to 2012 found that wheelchair users are 36% more likely to be killed in a crash with a motorist. Additionally, crash avoidance maneuvers were not detected in 76.4% of the fatal crashes studied, indicating that these vulnerable road users were likely not seen by motorists before the crash.

Dubbed Operation Best Foot Forward, crosswalk enforcement actions are part of a greater, comprehensive effort to educate drivers about Florida’s driver yield laws and curb the pattern of aggressive behavior towards pedestrians. During the operation, plainclothes deputies and officers cross the street at marked crosswalks, giving drivers ample time to yield as Florida law requires. Drivers who fail to comply may be issued a warning or a citation starting at $164 and three points on their license.

By increasing awareness of other road users and highlighting new and developing best practices for “inclusive streets,” the Best Foot Forward coalition partners are working to improve Central Florida streets for all through this enforcement, ongoing evaluations, and the implementation of engineering solutions.

NOTE TO EDITORS AND PRODUCERS: Media is invited to Operation Best Foot Forward and will have the opportunity to speak to drivers, police officers and pedestrians. Contact Eric Trull, 407.569.8993 (mobile).

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Crosswalk

Time

Drivers’ compliance with law (2021 avg)

Crosswalk Details and/or Adjacent Points of Interest
Orlando PD
Mercy Dr. & Kalwit Ln.

7:30 – 10:45 am

55%

Additional RRFB’s have been added or are planned along this corridor. BFF Data collectors and BFF staff have seen physically handicap pedestrians at this location and have spoken to them about challenges crossing.

MEDIA OPPORTUNITY: BWCF Board President, Lisa Portelli will be attending.

Metrocenter Blvd. &
Metrowest Blvd.

7:30 – 10:45 am

57%

LYNX stop, Valencia West Campus, Hilton Vacation Homes HQ. Each brings a diverse population to the crossing.
Kissimmee PD
N. Thacker Ave. &
Kissimmee Trail
(2310 N. Thacker Ave.)

8:30 – 10:00 am

30%

A school and Kissimmee Trail crossing that has an average driver yield rate of 30%. This is a 5-lane facility and is often very scary to cross for all road users.

 

MEDIA OPPORTUNITY: Osceola Commissioner Cheryl Grieb and members of Representative Kristen Arrington’s office plans to attend. This will be a high action enforcement location.

Mill Run Blvd. &
Mill Slough Rd.

10:30 am – 12:00 pm

26%

A 4-lane road that is between a community park and a neighborhood. Mill Creek Elementary and Denn John Middle are less than ¾ of a mile from this crosswalk. Each caters to a diverse population.
Longwood PD
SR 434 & S Grant St

11:00 am – 1:00 pm

62%

Enforcement is targeting right turning vehicles onto SR 434.

 

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Crosswalk

Time

Drivers’ compliance with law (2021 avg)

Crosswalk Details and/or Adjacent Points of Interest
Orange Co. Sheriff’s Office
Gatlin Ave. & Kennedy Ave.

7:30 – 9:00 am

77%

This crosswalk is being monitored ahead of the Barber Park Master Plan implementation and future intersection improvements including enhanced ADA features.
Avalon Park W Blvd. &
Cygnus Dr.

1:30 – 3:00 pm

71%

The crosswalk is located between an assisted living facility, with some residents having limited mobility, and a Publix supermarket.
Apopka PD
E 2nd St. & S. Forest Ave.

7:30 – 9:30 am

New to the Program!
46% base yield rate.

This crossing is a part of the West Orange Trail and is used by school children, as well as older adults with events at Fran Carlton Rec Center.

 

This crossing is being monitored ahead of the installation of additional traffic control devices.

 

MEDIA OPPORTUNITY: Mayor Bryan Nelson and BWCF Executive Director Emily Hanna plan to attend.

Oakland PD
Oakland Ave. & Sansparilla Rd.

8:00 – 10:00 am

68%

A connection to the West Orange Trail at a new residential community drawing a diverse population to the crossing.
Casselberry PD
Crystal Bowl Cir at
Casselberry Elementary

4:00 – 5:30 pm

38%

BFF Data Collectors are measuring drivers speeding in excess of 50 mph outside of school zone times!

This is a school crossing in front of Casselberry Elementary and being monitored ahead of gateway improvements being put in place by the city.

 

MEDIA OPPORTUNITY: The Best Foot Forward Program Manager and Bike/Walk Central Florida Community Outreach Manager plan to attend. This school adjacent crossing with a low yield rate when guards are not present will have high activity.

Osceola Co. Sheriff’s Office
Myakka St. & Tallahassee Blvd.

8:15 – 9:30 am

37%

A deaf resident often walks in this area.
Funie Steed Rd. &
Lindfields Blvd.

10:00 am – 12:00 pm

55%

Recent BFF Data Collectors have noted motorists were traveling greater than 50 m.p.h. with a posted speed of 35 m.p.h. and those not yielding were extremely aggressive.

 

This crosswalk is being monitored as part of an ongoing safety study currently underway examining the Funie Steed Rd. Corridor.

St. Cloud PD
Old Canoe Creek Rd. & 5th St.

1:00 – 2:30 pm

35%

Adjacent to a Walmart, a long-term rehabilitation center, a 55+ community, and a lynx bus stop. Many senior residents cross here, some with varying disabilities.
10th St. & Robinson Ave.

2:45 – 4:15 pm

70%

Adjacent to a 55+ community and connecting a manufacturing business to its parking.

 

Thursday, March 3, 2022

Crosswalk

Time

Drivers’ compliance with law (2021 avg)

Crosswalk Details and/or Adjacent Points of Interest
Seminole Co. Sheriff’s Office
Tuskawilla and Redbug,
NW slip lane

8:00 – 10:00 am

18%

This slip lane presents very dangerous conditions for any pedestrian! Seminole County is looking at how to make improvements here in partnership with MetroPlan Orlando.

 

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 in Orange County and the City of Orlando in 2012. It expanded to Osceola County, Kissimmee and St. Cloud in 2017 and Seminole County in October 2019. Apopka, Longwood, Oakland, and Winter Park recently joined the program in the fall of 2021. Best Foot Forward is now made up of some 38 coalition partners across Central Florida.

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: 2012-2021

  • Operating in three counties, Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties
  • More than 10,500 citations and warnings issued since 2012
  • More than 250 crosswalks evaluated in the program since 2012
  • 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/.

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Download the PDF Press Release Here

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