The Fort Myers Police Department’s traffic unit, along with patrol officers, have been conducting several operations over last few months that focused on bicycle and pedestrian safety. FMPD had received a High Visibility Grant through the Center for Urban Transportation Research. The grant allowed officers to conduct additional operations that enforce traffic laws designed to protect our bicyclists and pedestrians, along with raising awareness and overall education to those who travel in the City of Fort Myers.

Through the next several weeks, officers will move from the awareness and education phase; and into the enforcement phase.

The following are keys to pedestrian, bicycle and motor vehicle safety:

  • Pedestrians should always walk on the sidewalk and if no sidewalk, walk facing traffic.
  • Pedestrians and bicyclists should not wear headphones or talk on their cell phones.
  • Pedestrians and bicyclists should cross streets at marked crosswalks or intersections when possible and obey traffic signals such as WALK/DON’T WALK signs.
  • Pedestrians should make eye contact with drivers before crossing the street and watch out for cars turning or backing from driveways or streets.
  • Pedestrians and bicyclists traveling at night should cross the street in a well-lit area and/or in designated crosswalks.
  • Pedestrians and bicyclists should wear bright/light and/or reflective clothing, making themselves visible to drivers.
  • Walking or biking while impaired increases your chances of being struck.  STAY SOBER.
  • Bicyclists should have their bicycle equipped with a white light on the front visible from a distance of 500 feet and a red light visible from a distance of 600 feet, between sunset and sunrise during operation.
  • Pedestrians should carry a flashlight when walking at night.
  • Bicyclists should wear a bicycle helmet for safety. Florida law only requires bicycle riders and passengers under the age of 16 to wear a bicycle safety helmet during operation of the bicycle.
  • Bicyclists operating on the roadway are subject to obeying all traffic control devices to include stop signs and lighted traffic signals.
  • Pedestrians crossing the roadway at any other point other than a cross-walked intersection should yield the right-of-way to motor vehicles and cross at a right angle or shortest possible route to the opposite curb.
  • Drivers should always be cognizant of pedestrians and bicyclists utilizing sidewalks, crosswalks and roadways.  Drivers should exercise due care to avoid colliding with a pedestrian or bicyclists, as they share rights on the roadway.
  • Bicyclists operating upon a sidewalk or crosswalk shall yield the right-of-way to any pedestrian.
  • All bicycles operated upon the roadway or sidewalk shall be equipped with brakes enabling the bicycle to stop within 25 feet from a speed of 10 MPH.
  • Any person operating a bicycle is required to keep at least one hand on the handlebars while in operation.

Jim Mulligan
Captain – Operations Bureau/Public Information Office
Fort Myers Police Department
2210 Widman Way
Fort Myers, Florida 33901