Safety Belt Use in Northeast Florida

According to a 2021 survey by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), statewide use of safety belts increased slightly, from 89.8% in 2019 to 90.1% in 2021. Of the 18 counties in FDOT District Two, three were surveyed in 2021. Safety belt use in Northeast Florida increased in two out of the three counties surveyed. We are proud of these Alachua and St. Johns counties for making the list of high-usage counties!

Survey Results in 2021 for Safety Belt Use in Northeast Florida and Statewide

Usage Rates:
• Alachua County 95%
• St Johns County 92.1%
• Statewide Average 90.1%
• Duval County 87.3%

Alachua County Safety Belt Use Rates Highest in Florida

Congratulations, Alachua County, for having the highest usage rates in the state again! Survey results showed that Alachua equaled its highest-ever use rates, at 95.0%, and ranked #1 overall statewide. Alachua has been a long-time winner with buckling up. We are proud of Alachua for consistently remaining at the top of usage rates in Florida.  

St. Johns County Rates Highly in Safety Belt Use

Kudos to St. Johns County for maintaining an above-average usage rate. St. Johns came in at the fifth-highest county in the state with a 92.1% safety belt use rate (a tie with Lee County). Since 2018, St. Johns has rated over 90% safety belt use.

Duval County Safety Belt Use Needs Improvement

We have work to do in Duval County! Of the 2021 counties surveyed, Duval ranked the secondlowest safety belt use rate in the state, at 87.3% (followed only by Volusia at 84.%). Plans are for extensive efforts to provide resources, tools, and support to Duval County by educating others on the importance of buckling up. The FDOT District Two Community Traffic Safety Program (CTSP) has many occupant protection resources on its website and social media platforms.


Other Survey Results and Trends

Florida’s 2021 survey results show safety belt use differed by road type. Motorists on higher speed roads are buckling up more, while usage on local, lower speed roads are least likely buckled up. The highest use of safety belts was on interstate highways, at 93.1%, followed by principal arterials at 91.9%. The lowest usage was on local roads, at 87.6%, and minor arterials at 87.3%.

Safety belt usage also differed by vehicle type. Occupants in pickup trucks have exhibited lower usage than those in other vehicle types every year of the survey. SUV occupants frequently used their safety belts at 93.7%, car occupants at 90%, van occupants at 89.9%, and pickup occupants at 81.6%.

Survey results consistently indicated that females were more likely to wear a safety belt every year. In 2021, 92.9% of females buckled up, versus men, at 87.6%.

Occupants ages 35–39 buckled up 91.8% of the time, and those ages 16–34 buckled up the least, at 88.7%. Prior surveys show a similar pattern in usage among age groups. 

Overall, safety belt usage has shown an upward trend over time. The 2021 results indicate progress in use among occupants traveling on higher-speed roadways and certain types of vehicles (SUVs). Results also indicate where improvement is still needed among the low belt use groups, including occupants of pickup trucks, black occupants, and occupants traveling on lower-speed roadways.

FDOT State Safety Office administered the annual survey. State survey sites and locations were based on recent traffic fatality counts in 15 Florida counties. Click here to view the Safety Belt Use in Florida 2021 Final Report. (Note: No survey was conducted in 2020.)


One-Click Does the Trick for Occupant Protection

  • Wear your seat belt for every ride.
  • Buckling up is the single most effective thing you can do to protect yourself in a crash.
  • Secure children in a proper child safety seat.
  • Safety belt use isn’t just a good idea; IT’S THE LAW.

Your Traffic Safety Team provides a large variety of occupant protection materials via our website and social media channels.

Resources include:

Safety Belt Law History

In 1986, Florida implemented its first adult safety belt law. Safety belt use before the law was at 22% statewide. From 1999 to 2004, Florida’s use rate increased from 59% to just over 76% due to FDOT’s “Click It or Ticket” campaign and other efforts across the state. In 2009, Florida passed a primary enforcement safety belt bill, and safety belt use has increased since the law’s passage. Working together, we can continue to increase safety belt use and reduce fatalities and injuries on our roadways.

“Always Buckle Up … for Your Family. For Yourself. For LIFE.” 
No Regrets When You BUCKLE UP!

Be Tough Enough To Buckle Up!

Be Our Virtual Volunteer

Be a Community Traffic Safety Team “Virtual Volunteer” – It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3.

traffic safety virtual volunteer logo

Become a virtual volunteer! As part of our Northeast Florida Department of Transportation’s Community Traffic Safety Program, we create and share original traffic safety reminders and tips on our social media channels several times per week! Topics include Florida’s Strategic Highway Safety Plan key emphasis areas to work towards zero fatalities and serious injuries on our local roadways.

Each year, we have thousands of combined views and impressions on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn and YouTube, but we need your help.

Join us and help change behavior and save lives! You can do this by:

  • Liking or following us.
  • Sharing or reposting our content (don’t forget to tag and/or mention us).
  • Inviting others to follow us.
  • Repeat!

Connect with the Northeast Florida Community Traffic Safety Team on social media!

Volunteering without being physically present is not new. For years, volunteers have been off-site and have used the telephone, fax and postal mail to communicate. However, the revolution in information technology has opened up many new possibilities for volunteering and giving back to your community.

Even prior to the COVID-19 healthcare crisis and social distancing, there has been an increase in working from home. Virtual volunteering is a wonderful way to take advantage of contributing volunteer work over the internet. Social media has opened the door to expand the reach of our traffic safety tips and campaigns.

Benefits of Virtual Volunteering:

  • Increase community awareness.
  • Minimal investment of your time.
  • Flexible to your schedule with no time constraints.
  • Easy and feels good to send positive messages.
  • Help reduce crashes, injuries and fatalities on your local roadways.

We also love sharing YOUR photos, stories and events! You can email us at TrafficSafetyTeam@dot.state.fl.us. Be sure to let us know how to tag and mention your organization on social media!

traffic safety virtual volunteer thank you
Thank you for your time and consideration!

Traffic Safety Talk Winter 2022

FDOT District Two Community Traffic Safety Program News and Information

Traffic Safety Talk Winter 2022 is now available. Click here to download the Winter 2022 edition of Traffic Safety Talk.

2021 Reflection + Planning for 2022  

The landscape of the CTSP has changed over the past year, yet we continue to expand awareness of traffic safety issues and solve local traffic safety concerns. We have met the challenge of staying positive and engaged over the past year. Team members and community partners received 47,243 emails this year. This number does not include meeting invitations. This kept us connected and gave us the ability to share important information, tips, and strategies. Through engineering, education, enforcement, emergency medical services, and by providing resources on our website and social media channels, we remain a strong voice in traffic safety.
– Andrea Atran, M.A., CPM
FDOT District Two Community Traffic Safety Program Manager

Virtual Meetings + Engineering Concerns

Safety remains our number one goal as COVID concerns continue to impact everyone’s work and personal lives. Team meetings were held virtually through 2021 and will continue into 2022. Teams have used this opportunity to grow and welcome new members. We are proud to say our teams have risen to the challenge and continue to make progress in improving traffic safety in their communities. Over the past year, we held 72 virtual CTST meetings with a total of 924 attendees and 43 new members. Every CTST in District Two continued to address and solve traffic safety concerns. Since going virtual, we also reduced paper consumption and waste.

Picture of newsletter cover
Focused on Impaired Driving

Focused On Impaired Driving Prevention

We have promoted our annual Celebrate Safely, Designate a Driver campaign and the Recipes for the Road booklet for 24 years. According to Florida’s 2021-2025 SHSP, one out of every four traffic fatalities in Florida involves a driver impaired by alcohol or drugs.

CTST Members Step Up for Safety

Celebrate Safely, Designate a Driver continues to be a popular, grassroots campaign. It is focused on stopping impaired driving in Northeast Florida communities. With one out of every four traffic fatalities in Florida involving an impaired driver, according to Florida’s 2021-2025 SHSP, this safety message is a top priority for us.

CTST Members Step Up for Safety

Help Message Traffic Safety

In 2021, the majority of our content was shared electronically. We also worked on shipping out key traffic safety materials. This year, we ask for continued support in sharing traffic safety messages online, distributing information, and displaying materials. We plan to produce new activity books and traffic safety pieces in 2022.

Click here to read the complete CTSP Traffic Safety Talk – Winter 2022 Newsletter.

Traffic Safety Engineering Concerns

We rely on CTST members. Our members are local highway safety advocates. They are committed to solving traffic safety problems through a comprehensive, multi-jurisdictional, multidisciplinary approach. A major function of the CTSTs is to submit, review and address solutions for these concerns. Since last winter, we have:

  • Followed 259 Engineering Concerns
  • Received 115 New Concerns
  • Closed 117 Issues

Most Popular CTST Messages

Most Popular CTST Messages

Celebrate Safely, Designate a Driver

2019 Celebrate Safely Artwork

We have promoted our annual Celebrate Safely, Designate a Driver campaign and the Recipes for the Road booklet for 24 years. According to Florida’s 2021-2025 SHSP, one out of every four traffic fatalities in Florida involves a driver impaired by alcohol or drugs. Celebrate Safely, Designate a Driver and Recipes for the Road focus on the SHSP strategies of both education and insight into creating safer communities. They are specifically designed to work with local partners. This includes law enforcement, team members, restaurants, and bars. The goal is to promote responsible alcohol service and personal use at events or party hosting. They also promote safe transportation choices that encourage alternatives to driving while impaired.

Impaired Driving Initiative

This impaired driving initiative was created to help reduce alcohol-related traffic deaths and injuries throughout the holiday season. The Drive Safe and Drive Sober message is key at any time of year, and especially during the holidays. The following are important impaired driving safety tips and reminders included in this campaign. Before drinking alcohol, designate a non-drinking driver. Never let your friends drive impaired. Get a safe ride home – call a cab/ride-share. If you’re hosting a party, offer alcohol-free beverages, serve food, and make sure all guests leave with a sober driver.

During the holiday season, District Two CTST members reach out to local restaurants and bars to display the Celebrate Safely, Designate a Driver materials. Materials include 11×17 full-color posters, coasters and stickers. Numerous neighborhood establishments throughout Northeast Florida participate every year.

order-form

If you know any local establishments that would like to participate, please click here to order Celebrate Safely packages online.  


Recipes for the Road is part of our Celebrate Safely, Designate a Driver program. This year’s Annual Recipes for the Road is a 20-page digital recipe booklet filled with nonalcoholic drinks, mocktails, appetizers and treats along with traffic safety tips. There is also an 8.5×11 version to download, print and share. Our recipe videos have become very popular on social media channels like Pinterest and YouTube. 


Free Resources

Be a Community Traffic Safety Team “Virtual Volunteer” and share these Celebrate Safely images on your social media accounts. Don’t forget to follow and tag us! 

@trafficsafetyteam on Facebook and Instagram or @trafficsafetyfl on Twitter and Pinterest.

Celebrate Safely logo
Celebrate Safely with drink and key art
Celebrate Safely neon sign art
Drive sober, drive safe coaster

Make sure to check out the following:
Recipes for the Road: nonalcoholic drinks and safety tips
Mocktails: drink and food recipe cards and videos
Seasons of Safety: traffic safety-themed holiday card collection
Impaired Driving: traffic safety page with more resources and materials


Walk Safe Activity Card

Presenting our Walk Safe Activity Card. Since last year’s Florida Mobility Week through this October’s Pedestrian Safety Month, the FDOT District 2 Community Traffic Safety Program distributed 15,000 Walk Safe activity cards. They are available for free at all 18 county local library systems in Northeast Florida.

Walk Safe - Walk the Path to Safety card
Walk Safe – Pedestrian Activity Card with Safety Tips for Drivers and Walkers

This Walk Safe activity card is double-sided with a walking wise crossword puzzle and a walk the path to safety maze. Great for kids, parents, teachers, and homeschoolers. Libraries are a wonderful place for key traffic safety education and information resources for our CTSP to distribute at no cost to our local communities. Pedestrians and drivers should always pay attention, put phones down, keep eyes up, look, and listen.

Walk Safe - Walk the Path to Safety card

We have also created this free digital, one-sided 8.5×11 Walk Safe, Pedestrian Safety resource available here for downloading, printing and sharing with your community.

Remember to Always Be Cautious and Pay Attention – Walk Safe!

Walk Safe, a pedestrian safety and educational resource, is part of a series. The Ride Safe, Drive Safe and Bike Safe pieces are available online below. Each piece has a different activity or puzzle with important traffic safety tips and reminders. Our goal is to help reduce crashes, injuries and fatalities on our roadways through education and community outreach.

More Pedestrian Safety Tips

Pedestrians are a vulnerable road user. Whether walking for enjoyment, exercise or engaged in work on the roadway, they need to be safe. Our goal is to increase driver awareness and education of pedestrian traffic safety. Click here for more pedestrian safety tips.