Traffic Tip Tuesday 06-21-16

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Window tinting is commonplace in the hot climate of Florida. It helps keep the sun out of our eyes, and our vehicle interior cool. We get asked by many citizens as to the legality of window tint. So, here’s the deal: The front side windows must allow 28% or more light transmission. The side windows and rear window behind the driver and front seat passenger are allowed to be darker, as long as they allow 15% or more light transmission. Window tinting is also allowed on a front windshield as long as it remains above the AS-1 line on the windshield.
Anything lower than these points is a non-criminal traffic infraction.

As a final point on window tinting, the operator of a vehicle is responsible for the legality of the window tint of the vehicle that they are operating. As I have heard many times, “I bought the car like this,” is not an appropriate answer. Unfortunately, the previous owner or dealer may not have adhered to the window tint laws of our state, so be aware. Following these guidelines will keep you legal and cool. Drive careful.

Traffic Crash with Road Obstruction 06-15-16

Landover Boulevard and Elgin Boulevard

Multiple vehicles involved.

Please use an alternate route or expect delays until the roadway can be cleared (usually about 30 – 45 minutes).

For a real-time look at Hernando County Traffic Accidents and Responses – please visit the following link:

http://www.hernandosheriff.org/applications/cadinternetportal/

Traffic Tip Tuesday 06-14-16

By Sergeant Scott Reak

School is out, watch out. For kids that is. The school year has ended. Summer break brings a bag mixed emotions. Children are celebrating being able to sleep in and stay home all day. Parents are apprehensive for the same reasons. Either way, kids get bored, and will eventually find their way outside for activities. Summertime, along with carefree children, present additional hazards and areas of concern for motorists to be aware of.

Traffic Tip Tuesday 06-14-16

Although drivers should be cautious all year long, pay extra attention while driving through neighborhoods during the summer break, as children are out and about. While you are driving, scan the area around you for children. Kids can be anywhere; walking, biking, or just playing near the roadway. Children are often unpredictable and unaware of the dangers that surround them. If you see kids near the road, slow down. Bicycles or toys near the roadway are clues that children may be playing. Playgrounds and parks are also areas with a high concentration of children. Use caution.

Even at slow speeds, kids can be in danger. Remember to check behind your vehicle before backing. Children are small, and can “hide” below your line of sight. Parking lots are another problematic area.

Parents, you’re not off the hook. Keep an eye on your kids. Make sure that they are aware of the hazards that roads present. Don’t leave your kids unattended, and keep them out of roadway traffic. Pay special attention in high traffic areas, such as parking lots, where lower speeds give the perception of safety.

It only takes a fraction of a second for an accident or injury to occur. Together, we can make sure that our children make it back to school safely without a tragic, traffic related event. Drive careful, kids are everywhere.

Traffic Tip Tuesday 06-07-16

By Sergeant Scott Reak

With all of this rain our area has experienced over the past few days, and being solidly within hurricane season, it’s hard to overlook the possibility of flooded roads. Even considering the extensive engineering roadways are constructed with, heavy rains can often overload the drainage that’s in place. Road closures, as a result of flooding, become common when the rain has nowhere to go. Being extra vigilant during these periods of storms can mean the difference in having a pair of wet shoes or swimming to high ground.

Avoid driving through the flood waters. As most Florida drivers know, it only takes a little water to affect the handling of your vehicle. A smaller vehicle can be swept off the road in about 12 inches of moving water, with 2 feet of water being capable of carrying away most vehicles. Vehicles that are caught in moving water, are almost always carried away to deeper water. If for some reason your vehicle begins to sink underwater, abandon ship. Your car won’t swim, but you can.

Stop for barricades. Find another route. Luckily for you someone else has already tested the depths of the water ahead. Most likely the end result was less than desirable, forcing the road closure. The barricade wasn’t set up for fun, or to inconvenience you; It’s there solely to keep you out of danger. Learn from someone else’s mistake and choose an alternative route.

Alert the Sheriff’s Office if you observe a flooded area. We can send personnel to evaluate the situation.

If you plan on disregarding the first few points, consider the following:

Hidden obstacles. Ask yourself: What’s in the water ahead? Are there any obstructions laying beneath the water surface? An open storm drain or a tree branch? Hopefully the road ahead is still intact. If you can’t tell, turn around.

Downed power lines. The same reason we don’t use hair driers in the bath or shower, is the same reason we don’t want to drive through water with a live wire in it: electric shock. The current in a typical residential power line can easily kill a person. Water, due to its impurities, is an efficient conductor of electricity. Add the fact that water can easily surround you, and you can easily see how dangerous this situation can become.

Your vehicle may stall while crossing pooled water. You’ve gone too far and didn’t make it. A vehicle’s ignition should not get wet, and will easily shut down if exposed to water. It is highly unlikely that your vehicle will re-start until “dried out.” Deep water may also cause your engine to hydrostatic lock, or hydrolock for short. Hydrolocking is one of the most damaging events your engine could experience. Essentially your engine is full of water, prohibiting the moving parts from moving. This happens when the engine air intake draws in water. It will not restart. If that sounds bad, you’d be right. Unless of course you’ve been looking for a reason to get a replacement engine.

It’s not good for your vehicle over the long term. Even if the water doesn’t damage the engine or enter the cabin, water penetrates bearings, flushing the grease away, and can also compromise electrical, power steering, emissions and brake components. Salt water is especially damaging.

The Hernando County Sheriff’s Office wishes to protect our citizens and visitors to the best of our ability. Please allow us to keep you and your families safe during times of inclement weather. Use good judgment, be careful and stay dry.

Traffic Tip Tuesday 05-17-16

Aggressive drivers are a dangerous nuisance on our roadways. Certainly risky, aggressive driving can quickly become deadly.

Aggressive driving behavior is attributed to more than half of all fatal crashes on our roadways today.

We often hear the phrase “Aggressive Driving” in reference to motor vehicle safety, but the definition may not be clear to all of us. I’ll refer to the Florida State Uniform Traffic Control laws for an accurate definition in our state.

The state of Florida defines Aggressive Driving as committing two of the following acts simultaneously or in succession:

-Exceeding a posted speed limit
-Unsafely or improperly changing lanes
-Following another vehicle too closely
-Failing to yield to another vehicle’s right-of-way
-Improperly passing
-Violating a traffic control and signaling device

I’m sure if you’ve been driving any length of time that you’ve encountered some type of aggressive driving on the roadway.

A single aggressive act by one driver, often triggers aggressive responses from other drivers exacerbating the situation.

The Hernando County Sheriff’s Office actively enforces aggressive driving, and investigates crashes to determine whether aggressive driving is a factor.

Hopefully, an understanding of what constitutes aggressive driving can promote safer driving practices. Please drive safely and courteously.

Road CLOSED 05-11-16

Ireland Street (Spring Hill)

Road CLOSED 05-11-16

Ireland Street is CLOSED due to a Residential Fire
Numerous emergency vehicles in area

Please avoid the area or expect delays until the roadway can be cleared.

For a real-time look at Hernando County Traffic Accidents and Responses – please visit the following link:

http://www.hernandosheriff.org/applications/cadinternetportal/

Traffic Tip Tuesday 05-11-16

Continuing our theme of Motorcycle Safety Awareness for the month of May, we’re going to discuss motorcycle rider conspicuity. In other words, making motorcycles and their riders easier to see. Making motorcycles more conspicuous will result in less right of way violations for a motorcycle and its occupants, ultimately reducing crashes and other perilous events. Here’s a few ideas to make sure that a motorcyclist can be seen in a crowd of traffic:

Bright Colors – Obviously easier to see day or night, bright colors are more likely to be noticed than neutral or muted colors.

Reflective Vests – Enhancing a rider’s attire with a reflective vest can help other driver’s notice you. A reflective vest is a great choice if you use your motorcycle to commute, and your workplace has a specific dress code that does not include one piece leather race suits adorned with sponsor patches. Reflective vests are relatively inexpensive and breathe well, a boon to Florida riders.

Reflective Tape/Decals/Patches – These small additions to your riding gear could make all the difference in the wearer’s ability to be seen, especially at night. Your helmet is the highest point on a motorcycle rider adding reflective tape or decals on a helmet may be the best option in terms of long range visibility. Many riders choose to decorate their bikes with decals, why not add a couple that could potentially save a crash?

Headlights – This one is probably the easiest to use, because your motorcycle came with one, and hopefully the operator already possesses the necessary skill to activate the headlight. Many of the newer motorcycles have headlights that activate automatically when the ignition is on, if yours doesn’t, use the low beam. The low beam should provide sufficient lighting even during daytime hours, and will not tax a motorcycle’s delicate charging system.

Headlight Modulator – Federal law allows the use of headlight modulators on motorcycles. What’s a headlight modulator? A headlight modulator makes your headlight appear to flash. It intermittently lowers and raises the intensity of a headlight. So if you’ve ever seen a motorcycle constantly flashing it’s headlamp and wondered what was wrong with the motorcycle, the answer is most likely nothing; It’s equipped with a headlight modulator. Modulators are available in vehicle specific and universal fit applications and are commonly available at motorcycle shops.

Lane position – Let’s not forget lane positioning. As a motorcycle operator, choosing your position in a lane of travel can be very advantageous to your visibility. If multiple lanes are available, avoid the right lane to reduce interaction with traffic entering and leaving the roadway.

Some riders may balk at these tips, but hopefully all will take something positive away from these ideas. In the end, being conspicuous may keep another motorist from attempting to occupy the same space as you while travelling the roadways. Please ride and drive safely. Stay alert, and share the road.

TRAFFIC STOPS April 2016

During the month of April 2016, Hernando County deputies conducted 3,011 TRAFFIC STOPS throughout Hernando County.

This data does not include Traffic Stops conducted by the Brooksville Police Department or the Florida Highway Patrol.

Traffic Enforcement is conducted daily to keep Hernando County residents and visitors who travel our roadways safe.

If you have a traffic complaint or would like to request Traffic Enforcement, please contact our office at 352-754-6830 so we can obtain the required information.

Thank you.