Since November of 2015, High Visibility Enforcement Campaigns have given area police officers extra duties to keep pedestrians and cyclists safe on Tampa streets. Police departments that received High Visibility Enforcement funds from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) include the Clearwater Police Department, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, the Pasco Sheriff’s Office, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, the Pinellas Park Police Department, the Port Richey Police Department, the St. Petersburg Police Department, the Temple Terrace Police Department, and the University of South Florida Police Department.
High Visibility Enforcement is a three phase approach to pedestrian safety. First, pedestrians and motorists are educated about traffic laws with safety information cards, and cyclists are given helmets and bike lights, particularly if officers see them riding at night. In the second phase officers begin to issue warnings. In the last phase, police officers issue tickets in a final effort to enforce safe behavior.
Each police department focuses its resources on areas that present the greatest opportunity to reduce injuries and fatalities, and each department is grateful for the funding it has received. Captain Mike Pridemore of the Temple Terrace Police Department states: “The safety of our citizens is paramount.” University of South Florida’s Assistant Police Chief Chris Daniel agrees: “This grant aids in our quest to promote traffic safety and reduce bicycle and pedestrian related fatalities.” In a November 2nd 2015 press release from the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office and the FDOT, the purpose of High Visibility Enforcement is succinct: “At the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about. Saving lives.”