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Florida Lawmakers Propose Legislation To Increase Hit-And-Run Penalties

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Florida Rep. Eddy Gonzalez is co-sponsoring legislation to increase hit-and-run penalties.

The bill calls for a minimum jail time of three years and more if the victim is seriously hurt or killed.

“Nobody should be left on the side of the road,” Gonzalez said.

If a person witnesses a hit-and-run, he said, he or she should stop the car and try to help.

“Call 911 and do what’s right,” Gonzalez said.

Last year, Florida recorded 70,000 hit-and-run pedestrian bicycle crashes — injuring 17,000 people and killing 166 — making Florida one of the most dangerous hit-and-run states, according to First Coast News.

Andy Fasig, manager at Chain Reactions bike shop in Gainesville, said that a huge number of cyclists and drivers do not respect the rules of the road, such as cars allowing three feet of space when passing bikes, as well as bikes having reflectors and lights to alert car drivers.

GPD spokesman Ben Tobias said when people switch from being a vehicle driver to a pedestrian, they realize there is a lot they should be doing differently.

About Ethan Magoc

Ethan is a journalist at WUFT News. He's a Pennsylvania native who found a home reporting Florida's stories. Reach him by emailing emagoc@wuft.org or calling 352-294-1525.

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