Every year, thousands of lives are shattered and lost due to an issue that strikes without warning - impaired driving. Behind the wheel, our choices can have irreversible consequences, turning a vehicle into a deadly weapon. Whether influenced by alcohol, drugs, or distractions, impaired drivers jeopardize not only their own lives but also the innocent souls sharing the asphalt with them. The road to a safer tomorrow begins with acknowledging the gravity of this issue, understanding its far-reaching implications, and collectively steering away from the perilous path of impaired driving.
Fortunately, the Apopka Police Department is about to take on this issue with additional zeal.
The Florida Department of Transportation awarded the APD a $102,000 grant to help curb distracted, impaired, and aggressive driving.
According to a four-year report, the APD responded to 3,724 distracted driving-related crashes — which include talking or texting on the phone, inattentive driving, or external distractions. According to the report, 1,050 caused injuries, 50 incapacitating injuries, 18 deadly, and over 2,600 caused property damage.
The report also concluded that Apopka is the third worst city for distracted driving in Florida when compared to cities with comparable populations.
Part of the grant will cover the overtime accrued by officers out on patrol. The grant funds will also be spent on speed measurement devices like radar and lasers and on educational purposes.
Officials said they the FDOT funds will be available from November through September 2024.
The amounts awarded to receive reimbursement funds for high-visibility overtime enforcement grants are as follows: