The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office is pleased to announce the agency again received funding for a High Visibility Enforcement (HVE) initiative for pedestrian and bicycle safety.

Sarasota County ranks in the top 25 counties in Florida for traffic crashes resulting in serious and fatal injuries to pedestrians and bicyclists. To protect the safety of vulnerable road users, the sheriff’s office will conduct HVE details to increase awareness of and compliance with traffic laws that protect the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists. Enforcement efforts will focus primarily on education however, violations may result in warnings or citations.

These details will take place from August 8, 2022, through May 12, 2023, focusing on predetermined locations based on statistical crash data. These areas include:

• Stickney Point Road from Swift to Beneva Roads.
• Bee Ridge Road from Village Green Drive to Maceachen Boulevard, Sawyer Road to Bond Place, and Maxfield Drive to I-75.
• Fruitville Road from Houle Avenue to Paramount Drive.
• South Tamiami Trail from Park Place to Jacaranda Boulevard, E. Seminole Drive to Sunset Beach Drive, Beneva Road to N. Lakepointe Boulevard, and Blackburn Point Road to E. Bay Street.

Drivers are encouraged to always obey speed limits, never drive impaired, and watch for pedestrians and bicyclists. Bicyclists should obey traffic laws, ride in the direction of traffic, and use lights when riding at night. Pedestrians are asked to cross in crosswalks or at intersections, obey pedestrian signals, and make sure they are visible to drivers when walking at night.

Funding for this initiative is provided through a contract with the University of North Florida and the Institute of Police Technology and Management (IPTM), in partnership with the Florida Department of Transportation. The sheriff’s office will receive funds for overtime hours to conduct operations and special training on Florida’s bicycle and pedestrian laws, procedures, and best practices.