Do Florida drivers need to set up emergency contact information?

Trooper Steve answers viewer questions

ORLANDO, Fla. – News 6 traffic safety expert Trooper Steve Montiero answers viewer questions about the rules of the road every week, helping Orlando-area residents become better drivers by being better educated.

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The most recent question asks: Does the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles require emergency contact information?

Having emergency contacts listed on your driver’s license is not required by law. However, it’s a good idea to list an emergency contact anyway.

Here in the state of Florida, we are prone to some pretty crazy conditions, whether it be our resident Florida man or the wild weather we get year-round. From tornadoes to tropical storms to hurricanes, disaster can strike at any time.

First responders throughout the state have access to the Florida Crime Information Center, or FCIC. The program allows law enforcement to check everyone’s driver’s license.

Their mobile computers give back information pertaining to the specific license, everything from name, date of birth, residential address and of course, status of that driver’s license. But if you add an emergency contact that information will be clearly listed at the bottom of all the other information.

Hundreds of times I have investigated a crash where, unfortunately, someone involved was in serious enough condition that they could not tell me who their next of kin was or what family member to get in touch with. Having an emergency contact listed allows law enforcement to go the extra mile and get that friend or family member to you in times of need.

Hurricane season is a few months away but as we have seen before, these storms can get pretty serious, causing damage to our homes and causing major crashes. Now is the time to update your emergency contact if you have not done so.

I have provided the link here to the state website to where you can update this contact information and have it ready in case of emergency.

About the Author:

Steven Montiero, better known as “Trooper Steve," joined the News 6 morning team as its Traffic Safety Expert in October 2017. A Central Florida native and decorated combat veteran, Montiero comes to the station following an eight-year assignment with the Florida Highway Patrol.