Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Promote Child Safety Awareness Month

Florida Highway Patrol --DHSMV/FHP has designated August as Child Safety Awareness Month. This week we focus on safety around vehicles and preventing children from being hit when a vehicle is backing.

Blind Zones
• All vehicles have blind zones/blind spots.
• Get to know a vehicle’s blind spots.
• Typically, the larger the vehicle, the larger the blind zone; blind zones are often larger for shorter
• Blind zones can be affected by the size and shape of vehicle mirrors and windows, elevation of
driver’s seat, and slope of driveway.
• Keep your windows and mirrors clean. Never back a vehicle when the rear windows or any
mirrors are covered with dirt or any other substances.
Backing Out
• When backing in and out of a driveway, make sure all children are safe and accounted for.
• Walk around and check behind your vehicle before you get in.
• Whenever possible use a person outside the vehicle to help you back up.
• Check your rearview and side mirrors. Roll down your windows to listen for
• Keep your foot on the brake until after you put the vehicle into reverse.
• Place your right arm on the back of the seat and turn around so that you can look directly through
the rear window.
• Back slowly and check the path repeatedly.
• Bicyclists often ride on sidewalks so look both ways before backing over a sidewalk.
• Children on bicycles can be unpredictable and can make sudden changes in direction. Be
especially careful when children are present (school zones and residential areas).
• Florida Law states (f.s. 316.1985): The driver of a vehicle shall not back the same unless such
movement can be made with safety and without interfering with other traffic.
• Prevention of backing crashes is what it’s about, so TAKE A SECOND LOOK, if you have any

Driveway Safety
• Discourage children from playing in driveways and designate safe play areas away from
• If children play in the driveway, have an adult supervise at all times.
• Teach children to never play inside, on, around, or under vehicles.
• Keep vehicles in driveways/garages locked and store keys out of child’s reach.
• Keep toys, bicycles, etc. off the driveway.
To view the Department’s Child Safety Awareness Month video, go to:
For more information on this and other safety campaigns sponsored by the DHSMV visit, or contact the DHSMV Communication Office at (850) 617-3102.

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles provides highway safety and security through
excellence in service, education and enforcement. The Department is leading the way to a safer Florida through
the efficient and professional execution of its core mission: the issuance of driver licenses, vehicle tags and
titles and operation of the Florida Highway Patrol.

To learn more about DHSMV and the services offered, visit, follow us on Twitter @FLHSMV or find us on Facebook.

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