Florida troopers urge safety as 2.9M expected to take Thanksgiving road trip

AAA estimates 2.9M Floridians will travel 50 miles or more

State agencies are working together with a message of safety as Thanksgiving travel is expected to be the busiest Florida has seen in nearly two decades. With so many people on the road, the Florida Department of Transportation and Florida Highway Patrol urge drivers to exercise care while behind the wheel.

ORLANDO, Fla. – State agencies are working together with a message of safety as Thanksgiving travel is expected to be the busiest Florida has seen in nearly two decades.

With so many people on the road, the Florida Department of Transportation and Florida Highway Patrol urge drivers to exercise care while behind the wheel.

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According to AAA, 2.9 million Floridians will travel 50 miles or more for Thanksgiving.

Despite higher gas prices, 91% of travelers are expected to take a road trip for the holiday.

“There is going to be a lot of people on the roadway and that means everyone needs to be patient,” FHP Lt. Tara Crescenzi said.

While extra troopers will be out on roadways, drivers should also take steps of their own to be prepared on the road.

“Make sure you maintain the speed limit,” Crescenzi said. “Make sure you’re wearing your seatbelt, never drive impaired, and if you are feeling drowsy and need some rest, please pull over in a safe location and do so.”

FDOT encourages holiday travelers to check roadway conditions and view live streaming traffic cameras at FL511.com.

“An informed driver is a safer driver,” FDOT Engineer Jeremy Dilmore said. “Florida’s 511 gives you the tools to know before you go. Our thousands of live streaming traffic cameras and real-time incident data will help you make smarter decisions about your holiday travels.”

Roadside assistance for stranded motorists is also provided through FDOT’s Road Ranger service.

Drivers on Central Florida’s interstates and toll roads can request a Road Ranger’s assistance by calling *FHP (*347).

“Our goal is to see everyone arrive safely to their Thanksgiving celebration and back home again,” safety administrator Loreen Bobo said. “Florida’s target is zero fatal and serious injury crashes on our state’s roadways. Every driver can do their part to hit that target by buckling up, obeying the speed limit, and driving with care.”

For further details about Florida’s Road Rangers, visit fdot.tips/roadrangers.

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About the Author:

Mark Lehman became a News 6 reporter in July 2014, but he's been a Central Florida journalist and part of the News 6 team for much longer. While most people are fast asleep in their bed, Mark starts his day overnight by searching for news on the streets of Central Florida.