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Florida Takes Another Stab at Addressing Mobile Phone Usage

cellphoneThere are still several months remaining before the 2019 legislative session begins, but that hasn’t stopped efforts to tackle the ongoing problem of distracted Florida drivers being glued to their mobile devices while driving. Late last month, a new “Hands-Free Florida Law” also known as HB 45 was proposed, which would prevent drivers from using mobile phones to talk or text, though they would still be able to make use of a handsfree device.

Currently, texting while driving remains a secondary offense in Florida, which means a driver would need to have committed another infraction such as speeding before they could be pulled over for texting. With this proposed bill, texting and even talking with the phone in the hand would be “upgraded” to a primary offense, which would allow a law enforcement officer to pull a driver over if they were caught texting or talking on their phone regardless of whether or not they may have committed another infraction like running a stop sign, for instance.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with one of the Miami criminal traffic lawyerstoday.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Miami Police Launch Operation Safe Holidays

duiAs we approach the end of 2018, Miami law enforcement recently announced they’re ramping up efforts to crack down on drivers that may be driving impaired via an initiative being dubbed Operation Safe Holidays. A greater number of officers will be out patrolling the South Florida roadways and there will also be an increased amount of DUI checkpoints. These checkpoints will continue into New Year’s, which typically sees a larger number of impaired drivers on the road.

While Miami police may be doing most of the legwork in making the roads safer, the ridesharing company Uber is also hoping drivers make the right choice by offering discounts on its rides for those that opt to use the service versus driving impaired.

Besides Miami police, the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) is also doing its part to keep the roads safe. FHP is warning that drivers caught driving under the influence could face massive penalties of “at least” $15,000.

Remember that besides having a designated driver or using services like Uber and Lyft, AAA will also be operating its free Tow to Go service beginning on Friday, December 21.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Dismiss a Traffic Ticket

ticketDriving in Florida is a mission but getting a ticket in the Sunshine State can be a lot to handle. Like many other states Florida uses a point system to keep track of how well people are driving on the road. Each time you make a traffic violation your points start accumulating on your driving record, and as they keep adding up you face severe penalties, such as driver license suspension or revocation. The points don’t only add up on your record but they also result in fines. No one is a perfect driver all the time, so there are ways to make those points disappear after you receive your traffic ticket.

So, when you do receive a traffic ticket the way to dismiss it is by fighting it in court; however there is certain criteria that needs to be met in order to have the points removed. The ticket has to be a non-criminal violation and it can’t be a parking ticket. If your ticket is worthy to challenge in court you must give a formal notice to the proper court in the county where you received the ticket. This information may be located on the traffic ticket or online at the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles website.

 

There are steps to take for the Florida traffic court process to begin. Make sure to schedule a hearing, then hire a traffic ticket attorney, organize your case, and plead your case. If you’re found not guilty then all you have to do is fill out some paperwork and that will be the end of it. However, if you are found guilty then there might be a fine, court costs, and any additional penalties that you may have to pay. If you are found guilty then you may file for an appeal which may cost more but if found not guilty it will clean the points from your driving record.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-515-5045 to speak with someone at the Miami ticket law firm today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Miami-Dade County Set for Major Red Light Camera Changes

redLight-1As the debate over red light cameras continues, a recent ruling by a Miami County Court Judge may finally add a degree of uniformity in regards to enforcement, according to a WPLG article. The ruling requires Miami-Dade County cities to create a set of uniform red light camera rules before they can think about violation enforcement.

Currently, sixteen municipalities in the county have different sets of rules in how they determine a traffic violation caught on a red light camera. These rules are different when it comes to things like the actual location of a violation or vehicle speeds, for example. Each municipality outlines these rules in what’s called the Business Rules Questionnaires (BRQ). The BRQ is used by the red light camera contractor to review the camera images and determine a potential violation.

In a case involving a driver in Aventura who was caught running a red light, the man’s lawyer argued that drivers are oblivious to the distinct rules each city has and, therefore, an enforcement of a uniform ruleset should exist. A judge agreed and the case was sent to a Florida Court of Appeals. With the ruling, cities like Miami Gardens, North Miami Beach, Surfside, and Coral Gables are largely forced to cease issuing red light camera tickets until the higher court makes its decision.

To read more, please visit https://www.local10.com/news/florida/miami-dade/thousands-of-red-light-camera-tickets-may-be-wiped-out-after-miami-dade-judges-ruling.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with someone at the Miami ticket law firm today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Florida Officers Target Drunk Drivers with Unique Tool

bottlesNew Year’s Eve would seem like the most logical holiday in terms of drunk drivers being out on the roads in greater numbers. However, that dubious distinction falls on Thanksgiving Eve, which is largely viewed as the year’s busiest night for drinking.

While this year’s Thanksgiving Eve has come and gone, law enforcement officers in certain parts of Florida ramped up their efforts to cut down on drinking and driving by using modern technology to better catch offenders. This technology involved the use of what’s called a preliminary breath test (PBT).

With the PBT, a law enforcement officer can use the device to detect whether a container has alcohol in it or not. That means even if the container doesn’t look like a better bottle or if the alcoholic beverage is masquerading in the guise of a water bottle, the PBT is able to sniff out the presence of alcohol. It can almost be considered as a breathalyzer of sorts but for liquids.

The PBT is used primarily to catch drivers below the legal drinking age. Should one of these drivers be caught, it would result in a violation of Florida’s Zero Tolerance Law. Drivers under the legal drinking age caught with a minimum blood alcohol level of .02 are at risk of having their license suspended for six months.

To read more, visit http://www.nbc-2.com/story/39522296/what-is-a-preliminary-blood-test-gadget.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket lawyer team of team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami speeding ticket lawyer today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

 

South Florida’s Notorious Areas for Speeding

speed-1249610_1280Drivers going well over the speed limit isn’t something new, especially in Florida which is already known for having some of the worst and most aggressive drivers in the country. In fact, according to a WPLG article, it is not uncommon for the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) to catch speeders going as much as 100 miles per hours or more. So, which are the areas that tend to attract the most speeders? Let’s take a look.

We’ll kick things off with the Gratigny Expressway which FHP says has resulted in more than seventy drivers receiving a ticket between the period of January 2017 to September of this year. In particular, the stretch between Lejeune Road and Red Road is known for people going at least 100 mph or more.

Speaking of major highways, the Florida Turnpike is also popular with speeders, particularly Griffin Road to Sunrise Boulevard. Over 200 drivers have been caught speeding.

The dubious honor of the number one speeding spot goes to another highway: I-75 north. As for the area, it comprises Alligator Alley, from U.S. 27 east. If 200 drivers being busted on the Florida Turnpike weren’t enough, FHP has caught a whopping 221 drivers soaring through at those same high speeds.

To read more, check out the WPLG article at the following link: https://www.local10.com/news/local-10-investigates/fhp-troopers-target-these-speedway-hot-spots-in-south-florida.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a red light camera violation attorney today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

 

Are You Stopping for School Buses?

schoolBusAn alarming number of incidents involving school buses and children being struck by drivers around the country is spurring police in parts of Florida to take preventative measures to improve safety. In one instance over in Naples, an operation resulted in close to ten different drivers being ticketed due to their failure to stop when a school had its flashing red lights or crossing arm extended.

It’s worth reminding drivers that according to Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, all drivers must come to a complete stop when a school bus is displaying its stop signal, regardless of which direction a driver may be moving in on a two-way street or a highway with a paved median divider. Drivers must remain stopped until children have cleared the road and the bus has fully withdrawn its stop arm. Should a driver approach an oncoming bus and there is a raised barrier or a minimum of five feet of unpaved space between traffic lanes, then they are not required to stop. However, drivers should still slow down and keep an eye out for any children that may be hopping onto or off the bus.

To read more about the operation in Naples, please visit https://www.naplesnews.com/story/news/local/2018/11/12/ccso-conducts-school-bus-safety-operation-after-string-nationwide-incidents/1975493002/.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with one of the Miami criminal traffic lawyers today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

South Florida Looks to “Calm” Traffic

speedBumpStandstill traffic is practically a tradition in Miami where the major highways and roadways like I-95 and Bird Road become heavily congested. Thanks to smartphone apps like the popular Waze, drivers are often redirected through local neighborhood streets as a means of circumventing the bottlenecks while shaving off a few minutes from the commute.

The problem is the countless numbers of drivers that drive through these local streets at high speeds or do so while being distracted, usually by talking on their phone or worse, texting. Pedestrian lives are in danger and there are greater odds for a crash. To try and tackle this, city planners are increasingly adopting what’s called “traffic calming”.

Despite its name, traffic calming has nothing to do with the body and mind. Instead, the approach works by employing measures to control speed and traffic volume, hopefully resulting in safer streets. City planners may opt for speed bumps, roundabouts, chicanes, or speed tables for example. Coral Gables has already received the okay from the county to do what it needs to implement traffic calming. It also reduced the speed limit on residential roads by five miles to 25 MPH.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

 

All About Red Light Cameras

redLightWhile it is legal to make a right turn on red in most parts of South Florida, there are exceptions where it is illegal. Perhaps you turned right at one of these spots or maybe you ran the red light just as it was turning red. If a red light camera happens to catch you, chances are you may receive a hefty fine via postal mail.

Though they remain a highly contentious issue and have been largely phased out, red light cameras can still be found in parts of Florida. These cameras snap a photo of the license plate when a driver passes through the light when it’s red which is then recorded and sent to the enforcement program which sends out the citation. These cameras are also able to record several seconds of video to use as additional evidence.

Here in Florida, if a vehicle is indeed cited for a red light camera violation, that citation will be sent to the registered owner of the vehicle. This means that even if a licensed driver happens to be borrowing the vehicle, the owner is the person liable for the citation. In such a scenario, it may be a wise idea to seek legal advice from a traffic attorney as the citation can potentially be contested. The citation fines typically hover around $158 but can increase substantially.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket lawyer team of team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami speeding ticket lawyer today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

 

How to Deal with Wrong Way Drivers

wrongWayBesides drunk driving and its many fatalities, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that over 300 people die every year due to another common driving problem: wrong way drivers. Besides the fatalities, wrong way crashes also injure thousands of people each year, so what can be done?

Florida State University (FSU) researchers are using the information they’ve gathered about traffic safety to tackle the wrong way driving issue. This may be achieved by using “smart” signs as well as markers on the pavement incorporating technology to boost safety efforts. While installing countermeasures before entering ramps has helped, a major problem needing to be addressed is how to get the attention of a driver if they have already started driving the wrong way. One way to achieve this is by having blank signs in place triggered by a radar that would light up the moment a vehicle traveling the wrong way is detected.

FSU studies also zeroed in on what countermeasures would work best to deal with drivers that may be impaired. Sure enough, flashing signs proved to be most effective as people’s attention will generally be drawn to things that appear instantly.

You can read more at the following link: https://news.fsu.edu/news/2018/10/29/fsu-research-investigates-smart-highway-signs-to-prevent-wrong-way-driving-crashes/.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with our legal team about fighting your Miami civil traffic tickets.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.