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
drivers.
• 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
children/pedestrians.
• 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
doubt!

Driveway Safety
• Discourage children from playing in driveways and designate safe play areas away from
vehicles.
• 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:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykzgp5iwiPU.
For more information on this and other safety campaigns sponsored by the DHSMV visit
www.flhsmv.gov/SafetyTips/, 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
www.flhsmv.gov, follow us on Twitter @FLHSMV or find us on Facebook.


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