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State Safety Office / Programs / Aggressive Driving

Speed and Aggressive Driving

Picture of Crosswalk Sign

Speed and Aggressive Driving

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines aggressive driving as, "when individuals commit a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property."  Aggressive driving occurs when a driver has committing two or more of the following actions: speeding, failure to yield right-of-way, improper or unsafe lane changes, improper passing, following too closely or the failure to obey traffic control devices (stop signs, yield signs, traffic signals, railroad grade cross signals, etc.).

Aggressive Driving

Aggressive Driving is one of eight emphasis areas listed in Florida's 2012 Strategic Highway Safety Plan, (SHSP).  To combat aggressive driving, our efforts focus on:
  1. Supporting effective law enforcement and promoting efforts to reduce aggressive driving;
  2. Training and education on the problem of aggressive driving; and
  3. Identifying engineering initiatives to reduce aggressive driving.

Speed Control

Speed Control involves a balanced program effort that includes: defining the relationship between speed, speeding, and safety; applying road and engineering measures to obtain appropriate speeds; setting speed limits that are safe and reasonable; applying enforcement efforts and appropriate technology that effectively address speeders and deter speeding; marketing communication and educational messages that focus on high-risk drivers; and soliciting the cooperation, support, and leadership of traffic safety stakeholders.

For Grants Funding

Programs receiving grant funding in this priority area are focused on four major program related categories:

  1. Problem Identification: Data collection and analysis to identify and develop countermeasures and awareness initiatives that leads to appropriate modifications in driver behavior.

  2. Engineering Countermeasures: Speed management techniques and technology that can be engineered into the existing highway system or incorporated into the Intelligent Transportation System to improve voluntary compliance with speed limits and prevent speeding.

  3. Communication Program: Communication programs to ensure motorist acceptance and to enhance compliance with the introduction of revised speed limits and strict enforcement operations.

  4. Enforcement Countermeasures: Enforcement to strategically address speeders, locations, and conditions most common or most hazardous in speeding-related crashes.

Items eligible for funding under this category may include: speed measuring devices, radar display trailers, and public awareness materials.

All program areas funded with grant funds are required to have an evaluation method that will allow assessment of the funded program's level of success in reducing fatalities and injuries. For more information, see our Grants page.


In Florida, law enforcement agencies take speeding and aggressive driving very seriously. Their goal is to save lives and they're putting all drivers on alert- the posted speed limit IS THE LAW. Officers will be on the lookout for and ticketing speeding and aggressive drivers.


Speeding and red light running are the most frequently cited aggressive driving violations.  A 2011 publication1 of The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration reports that excessive speed is common with a large majority of drivers admitting to speeding. The NHTSA publication also reports that "the percentage of speeding crashes has changed little over the years."


Infrastructure may contribute to aggressive driving. Coordinated signal timing between intersections, new or different signal timing, or speed limit reviews may help reduce aggressive driving.  "Speed limits should be set based on the road segment’s design speed, vulnerable users, traffic operations, and environmental conditions; if not, many drivers may lose respect for and exceed the speed limit."1  

Other effective engineering countermeasures include red light cameras, advanced warning or flow control via Intelligent Transportation Systems, traffic calming, properly scheduled and designed workzones, turnbays, turnlanes, standing bays for buses, variable speed limits and variable direction lanes.

1 - National Highway Traffic Safety Administration - Countermeasures that Work


Safety Tips for Aggressive Driving NHTSA Model Community Speed Control Program icon for adobe pdf
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Data Driving Approaches to Crime and Traffic Safety (DDACTS)
Florida Highway Patrol  

For more information contact Pete Cohen @  (850) 414-4026