FHP patrols random SunRail intersections

FDOT pays off-duty troopers to monitor crossings

The Insider
The Insider

The Florida Highway Patrol said on Monday it will begin patrolling random SunRail intersections to make sure drivers are obeying the law.

The extra patrols come after a car stalled on the tracks and was struck by the SunRail last month and after Local 6 captured several close calls along the tracks with drivers crossing the tracks illegally.

"This is not a new law. Drivers know when you get your driver's license at 16, it's in the driver's handbook, you cannot be stopped on the tracks," said FHP Sgt. Kim Montes.

About a dozen drivers were ticketed Monday morning alone, according to troopers.

Troopers said they don't have a designated spot, but instead will patrol various locations throughout their shift.

"It's not just FHP, it's all agencies. right now, we have two troopers assigned to it. If a trooper goes through that area that's on duty, they can also take enforcement action," Montes said.

FHP said two troopers will patrol 26 intersections on Monday during peak hours of 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

SunRail officials said they will use off-duty troopers to patrol crossings at state highways. The Florida Department of Transportation will pay FHP $25,000 to monitor the areas until the end of the month.

Residents said the intersection where the SunRail crash occurred, at the intersection of Maitland Avenue and Packwood, has been a trouble spot for years.

Troopers said they will re-evaluate the program at the end of the month and may decide to increase law enforcement.

Meanwhile, if you are riding SunRail Monday, Dunkin' Donuts is offering free iced coffee to commuters at seven SunRail stops. Dunkin' Donuts will also be back from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Florida Hospital Health Village and Orlando Health Amtrak stops.