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Updated: 02/21/2013 08:00:04AM

It is important to know and follow the law

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Bartow Police Chief Joseph Hall

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In this day and time, we as citizens get inundated with rules and laws, but most are necessary to keep us all safe. In order to successfully accomplish this, citizens must follow these regulations as strictly as they can. Traffic laws are no different. Chances are your first encounter with the police is going to be over a traffic law violation.

Traffic infractions such as speeding, improper lane change and running red lights are all laws that are important for you to follow for two reasons: Firstly, for your safety and the safety of others; secondly, if you get a ticket it is likely going to cost you a lot of money. In Florida, speeding fines are steep. Just going 10 miles above the speed limit will cost you $204, if you are on the highway. If you are in a construction or school zone, it is going to cost you $304 for 10 miles per hour over the speed limit. This doesn’t even take into account your insurance premiums for getting cited.

Bicycle and pedestrian violations are not that much better. They average around $62.50 for each violation. Failing to yield to an emergency vehicle is going to cost you upwards of $166.

So, be cognizant of what you are doing when driving. Know the law, don’t text and drive and always drive defensively. It pays for you to know the law and drive accordingly in the long run.

As always, if you have questions, we at the Bartow Police Department can be reached at 863-534-5034.

From the Police Department: Due to an increase of complaints from motorists, the Bartow Police Department will be monitoring the intersection of Broadway Avenue and Van Fleet Drive, for those who block the intersection.

In the past week officers targeted the intersection of Polk Street and Broadway Avenue after complaints were made and issued 11 citations.

If a driver is citied for blocking the intersection, FSS 316.2061, it is a civil fine in the amount of $164.

Motorists are encouraged to ensure they can exit the intersection prior to entering it.

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