I don’t know that we have adequate data because of the way the police reports and crash reports are done. We’ve got a lot of work to do with law enforcement, in terms of rewriting the laws, which we’re in the process of doing. We’ve started doing that, because many of the laws are written such a way that the layperson cannot understand what the law says and, consequently, law enforcement has problems understanding the law as do many of our engineers. The laws are just written in a way that they’re not very clear, so we’re in the process of rewriting many of the laws this year, and we’re going to try to get through the rest of them before our next legislative session, which comes this time next year.
So we have to improve the way the laws are written, and then we’ve got a lot of education to do, including the law enforcement, and, fortunately, we have a statewide coalition that includes Florida Highway Patrol and Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, the Florida Association of Police Chiefs, the Florida Association of Sheriffs, and they’re all working with us to create what are called role call videos that they can show when they get together every morning to help educate law enforcement. And, of course, both our media and our high-visibility enforcement campaigns are all helping to educate the drivers and pedestrians and cyclists. But we’ve got a lot of work to do. It’s very much like getting the usage of seatbelts increased over time. It’s not something that’s going to happen overnight.
What do you tell drivers to convince them to be more aware?
What we try to get them to do is understand what the laws are and what bicyclists and pedestrians, what their rights and responsibilities are because there’re lots of misconceptions, and so, for example, when a pedestrian uses a crosswalk, the driver is supposed to yield. We actually had, at one of our high-visibility enforcement locations, a plainclothesman police, and a news reporter and her cameraman who were crossing in a legal crosswalk at the right time, there were two or three lanes in one direction, and a woman almost hit them.
And the police were downstream and they pulled her over, and she was belligerent that she was getting stopped. We have real attitude issues, both pedestrians and bicyclists and motorists. I mean we have bad behavior with all groups.