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Public Safety Agencies in Lee County Want to Keep Roads Safe During Holiday Season

drive safely.jpg
US General Services Administration

December is National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month and representatives from the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, Florida Highway Patrol, Cape Coral and Fort Myers Police Departments and Lee Health held a press conference on Tuesday to share tips on how people can keep themselves and others safe on the roads.

The month typically focuses on driving while under the influence of a substance, but FHP Lieutenant Greg Bueno also wanted to highlight the dangers of driving while drowsy.

“It's dangerous because it can impair your judgement, it can impair your vision and it can impair your reaction and perception time," Bueno said. "Driving while tired can also lead to nodding off behind the wheel.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported 91,000 drowsy driving crashes in 2017 and 795 deaths.

Cape Coral Police Department’s Deputy Chief Lisa Barnes said distracted driving killed about 1,800 people nationwide in 2018.

"About one in five of those people that were killed weren’t even actually in a car--they were walking, jogging or just beside their car when they were hit," Barnes said.

Greg Bueno said it takes community effort to keep roads safe.

"So give the gift of safety this year: do the right thing, make good choices, be sober, distracted-free and well rested," Bueno said.

Andrea Perdomo
Florida Highway Patrol Lieutenant Greg Bueno speaks at a press conference held in Fort Myers.

Andrea Perdomo is a reporter for WGCU News. She started her career in public radio as an intern for the Miami-based NPR station, WLRN. Andrea graduated from Florida International University, where she was a contributing writer for the student-run newspaper, The Panther Press, and was also a member of the university's Society of Professional Journalists chapter.