The St. Cloud Police Department has been awarded a $27,000 grant from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to conduct a series of distracted driver operations. These operations, scheduled to occur at various locations and times, aim to discourage the use of cellphones while driving and reinforce safe driving habits. The ultimate goal is to reduce the number of distracted driving crashes and fatalities.

On April 29, as part of this initiative, the St. Cloud Police Department stopped 87 drivers. Each driver received educational materials detailing the fines associated with violating Florida’s Texting While Driving statutes. The operation resulted in 53 warnings and 42 citations issued to offenders.

Operation Best Foot Forward: Promoting Pedestrian Safety

In addition to tackling distracted driving, the St. Cloud Police Department participated in Operation Best Foot Forward, a quarterly safety enforcement campaign conducted from April 30 to May 10. This operation involved 18 law enforcement agencies across six counties, including Brevard, Marion, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, and Volusia. During Operation Best Foot Forward, plainclothes officers, deputies, and volunteers cross streets at marked crosswalks, giving drivers sufficient time to slow down and stop safely. Drivers who fail to stop as required by Florida law are pulled over and face a minimum $164 citation and three points on their driver’s license. These enforcements support the Target Zero and Vision Zero campaigns, which aim to reduce traffic-related serious injuries and fatalities to zero.

On Tuesday May 7 in St. Cloud, at 10th Street and Mississippi, St. Cloud Police issued 8 warnings and 13 citations. At Delaware Ave. and 17th Street Officers with the St. Cloud Police issued 4 warnings and 7 citations. 

Safety Tips for Drivers and Pedestrians

The St. Cloud Police Department and other local law enforcement agencies encourage the community to follow these safety practices:

For Drivers:

  • Avoid speeding and distracted driving to minimize the risk of traffic crashes.
  • Watch for pedestrians at all marked crosswalks and unmarked intersections.
  • Stay stopped until pedestrians have cleared your half of the roadway and are more than one lane away.

For Pedestrians:

  • Use marked crosswalks and make yourself visible by raising a hand while crossing.
  • Wear bright or reflective clothing and use a flashlight when it’s dark.

The St. Cloud Police Department remains committed to enhancing road safety and reducing traffic incidents through these focused operations and community education efforts.