Florida counts on truckers to police themselves

| Wednesday, January 30, 2002

The Florida Department of Transportation is relying on truckdrivers to monitor themselves for hours-of-service limits. An officer shortage has restricted the time spent patrolling the state's roads to track down violators.

Currently, Florida employs 200 officers for enforcement, up 50 in the past two years, but they still lack sufficient numbers to monitor the entire state. The department's enforcement unit must concentrate on the largest urban areas for enforcement.

"There's no way for us to keep track of everybody," said Lt. Kenny Morris of the department's enforcement unit. He says the state relies on truckers to be responsible for themselves. "It's kind of self-governing a little bit there."

>From 1999 to 2000, the truck-related fatalities dropped statewide, according to the state Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Department. Investigations into the crashes determined that fatigue or sleep was a factor in one crash during the two-year span.

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