Road with street sign icons for a car, pedestrian and bicycle.

Traffic Safety in Sunny Isles Beach

Road Report – Monday, September 19, 2022

The Road Report is an update on traffic and pedestrian safety initiatives, key statistics, events and news from the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department.

Strategic Traffic Enforcement Plan (S.T.E.P.) Currently Underway

The Sunny Isles Beach Police Department has initiated a Strategic Traffic Enforcement Plan (S.T.E.P.) on the streets of Sunny Isles Beach. Officers have conducted numerous traffic enforcement details since initiating the plan on August 17, 2022. So far, these details have resulted in 261 citations and 1 arrest.

Despite the inclement weather, Sgt. Hernandez had another productive week coordinating our S.T.E.P detail. Below are the results from our 6th S.T.E.P. detail.

*Reminder – this detail is separate from our ongoing traffic blitzes which are also underway.

S.T.E.P. citations for the past week (9/14 – 9/18)  include:

Speeding – 15
Seatbelt Violation – 1
Red Light Violation – 5
Failure to Obey Traffic Control Device – 7
Driver’s License Violation – 1
General Moving Violation – 2
Miscellaneous Non-Moving Violation – 2
Bicycle Violation – 2
Bus Lane Violation (193 St. & A1A) – 8
Total Citations – 43

Motorists are advised to follow all traffic safety laws to avoid receiving a citation.

9/22 Traffic Blitz

On Thursday, September 22, the traffic unit under the Supervision of Sergeant Hernandez conducted a city-wide traffic blitz. The following is the statistical breakdown of the operation:

Speeding – 4
Bus Lane Violation – 1No Registration – 3Drivers License Violation – 8
Violation of Traffic Control Device – 6
Red Light Violation – 5
General Moving Violation – 2
Failure to Yield to Pedestrian in a Crosswalk – 1
Seized Tag Order – 1
*1 arrest for felony fugitive warrant
Total Citations – 31

Key Statistics*

This week, the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department:

  • Issued 162 citations
  • Responded to 6 traffic crashes**
  • 345,471 estimated total vehicles traveling through the City***

* Estimates are for the week of September 11 – 17, 2022, at 11:59 pm.
** “Crashes” is the FDOT required technical term for all accidents, ranging from single-vehicle minor accidents, including those in parking lots, to multi-car major accidents on state roads.
*** Estimates were taken from License Plate Reader (LPR) cameras located on Collins Avenue, the William Lehman Causeway, and Sunny Isles Boulevard.

Key Statistics Archive by Month

MonthVehiclesTraffic CrashesCitations
September 20212,165,33739479
October 20212,225,09758514
November 20212,466,36367458
December 20212,018,73388400
January 20221,814,36572488
February 20221,994,71356651
March 20221,793,71260691
April 20221,572,54962582
May 20221,566,94452555
June 20221,334,16339536
July 20221,646,38437590
August 20221,328,75352853

State and National Statistics

Safety Initiatives

Zero-Tolerance Traffic Enforcement – Ongoing

The Sunny Isles Beach Police Department continues to implement a zero-tolerance traffic enforcement policy, as well as conduct numerous traffic safety educational campaigns. Listed below are some of the latest initiatives to increase pedestrian and bicycle safety throughout our city.

Increased Police Presence on Collins Avenue and 163 Street

SIBPD started out 2022 strong, stepping up traffic enforcement patrols considerably. Our PD added two more dedicated uniform patrol traffic units. This specialized division focuses exclusively on enforcing traffic violations.

SIBPD has also increased officer and patrol presence on Sunny Isles Boulevard and Collins Avenue. In 2020 our police department issued 194 careless driving citations, 175 speeding citations and 136 stop sign citations. In 2021, and after the initiation of our zero-tolerance and increased HVE details, PD issued 301 careless driving citations, 1,003 speeding citations, 520 red light citations and 464 stop sign citations. Officers will continue to conduct traffic stops for red-light runners, speeding, reckless driving and additional moving violations throughout our city.

High Visibility Enforcement Details

Since initiation of the zero-tolerance traffic enforcement, the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department has conducted multiple High Visibility Enforcement Details throughout Sunny Isles Beach. The goal of these enforcement efforts is to increase awareness of and compliance with traffic laws that protect the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists. Listed below are the results from these details:

August 18 – September 5, 2022
A stepped-up traffic enforcement detail is currently underway in Sunny Isles Beach. So far, this detail has been very productive, resulting in 60 citations and 1 arrest. Motorists are advised to follow all traffic safety laws to avoid receiving a citation.

August 16, 2022
On Tuesday, August 16, the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department organized a Multi-Agency Traffic Enforcement Details on the streets of Sunny Isles Beach. The detail resulted in 57 citations including 1 arrest for a battery bench warrant.

Total Citations Breakdown:

  • Speeding – 12
  • No valid registration – 11
  • No insurance – 2
  • Driving without a license – 3
  • Tag violations – 8
  • Seat belt – 1
  • Expired driver’s license – 4
  • General moving violation – 16

+ 1 arrest for a battery bench warrant

April 27, 2022
On Wednesday, April 27, the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department in collaboration with the Florida Department of Transportation’s NE Community Traffic Safety Team, participated in a Multi-Agency Traffic Enforcement Detail. The purpose of this operation was for the apprehension and/or citation of drivers and for public education and awareness of the dangers of impaired driving, distracted driving, Move-Over Law compliance, aggressive driving (as part of FDOT’s on-going Put it Down campaign), speeding, red-light running, seat belt compliance, bike/pedestrian safety and general traffic safety. This operation was conducted at various locations in the municipality of Sunny Isles Beach. This detail resulted in:

  • 53 traffic citations
  • 2 written warnings
  • 82 traffic safety materials distributed

December 1, 2021
On Wednesday, December 1, the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department in collaboration with the Florida Department of Transportation’s Community Traffic Safety Program, participated in a Multi-Agency Traffic Enforcement Detail within Sunny Isles Beach. A total of 29 officers from the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department and other local law enforcement agencies were effectively able to educate the public on traffic safety, and those that violated traffic safety laws were cited accordingly. This detail resulted in:

  • 0 arrests
  • 131 citations
  • 16 written warnings
  • 248 traffic safety materials distributed

October 2021
In October, SIBPD conducted multiple traffic enforcement details on SR-826/Sunny Isles Boulevard/163 Street and Collins Avenue. The goal was to increase awareness of and compliance with traffic laws and enhance the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists. Officers handed out educational materials to pedestrians and motorists, and conducted traffic stops for red-light runners, speeding, reckless driving, and additional moving violations.

  • Monday, October 18, 2021
    300 Block of Sunny Isles Blvd
    10 am – 2 pm
    44 Citations & Educational Materials Given
  • Tuesday, October 19, 2021
    186 Street & Collins Avenue
    10 am – 2 pm
    30 Citations & Educational Materials Given
  • Wednesday, October 20, 2021
    159 Street & Collins Avenue
    10 am – 12 pm
    11 Citations & Educational Materials Given

We would like to remind motorists that the speed limit when entering Sunny Isles Beach via eastbound SR-826/Sunny Isles Boulevard/163 Street is 35 mph. Slow down and be aware of the traffic signal near Gateway Center. You must stop at the traffic light when the light is red. Follow these simple traffic rules to keep yourself and everyone else safe on the road.

April 14, 2021
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) District Six, along with the Bal Harbour, Surfside and Sunny Isles Beach Police Departments, through its NE Community Traffic Safety Team program as well other law enforcement agencies conducted a multi‐agency traffic safety enforcement and educational detail on Wednesday, April 14 , from 8 am to 5 pm. This event was made possible through the mutual‐aid agreement and the Northeast (NE) Community Traffic Safety Team program. Law enforcement focused primarily on distracted driving (as part of the ongoing FDOT Put it Down campaign), aggressive driving, red‐light running, speeding, seatbelt use, move‐over law compliance, bike/pedestrian safety compliance and general traffic safety. Educational materials provided by FDOT were distributed during the operation.

This detail resulted in:

  • 1 Arrest
  • 145 Citations
  • 53 Warnings
  • 226 Educational Contacts

View photos from the April 14 Detail at our online photo gallery.

February 26 – May 14, 2021
Through a contract with the University of North Florida in partnership with the Florida Department of Transportation’s focused initiative to improve pedestrian and bicycle safety, the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department conducted a high visibility enforcement detail on Collins Avenue to increase awareness of and compliance with traffic laws that protect the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists. Learn more at sibfl.net/hve. View photos from the February 26 Detail at our online photo gallery.

On 2/26, the SIBPD provided educational contact to:

  • 451 Pedestrians
  • 63 Bicyclists
  • 87 Motorists

Establishment of Mobility & Pedestrian Safety Advisory Committee (MAPSAC)

At the January 2022 City Commission Meeting, the Commission voted to formally establish and appoint five members to the newly formed Mobility and Pedestrian Safety Advisory Committee (MAPSAC). This citizen advisory committee will explore ways to make it safer to walk, jog and bike in our city, and then make recommendations to the City Commission.

The MAPSAC welcomes input and participation from the public. If you would like to contact the MAPSAC with suggestions or comments, you can do so at the link below.

Contact Us

Automated License Plate Readers (ALPR)

When looking at the data, it is evident that our police department’s efforts are working. Between February 11 and March 16, 2021, just over one month, our Automated License Plate Readers (ALPR) detected approximately 2.3 million vehicles traveling through Sunny Isles Beach, a considerable amount when you consider our population of just over 23,000. During that period there were 44 traffic crashes and 1,286 moving violations issued. When you break those numbers down, many can be attributed to minor accidents, incidents happening in parking lots and medians, not necessarily on the road or involving pedestrians.

FDOT & City Traffic Safety Improvements

The City of Sunny Isles Beach, along with the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), continues to address traffic and pedestrian safety throughout the city. FDOT recently installed flashing lights, a radar speed sign on westbound Sunny Isles Boulevard, and pavement speed limit markers on each eastbound lane on Sunny Isles Boulevard, just west of the pedestrian signal light. Our Police Department initiated a substantial zero-tolerance program, and also purchased six solar-powered, FDOT-approved radar speed signs to remind drivers of the speed limit and warn them of their own speed. They will be deployed at strategic locations throughout the City. One future safety measure we asked FDOT to consider is the installation of rumble strips coming off the bridge eastbound on Sunny Isles Boulevard to alert and slow down inattentive drivers. Listed below are additional traffic safety improvements that have been recently implemented in collaboration with FDOT.

Signal Light at 189 Street & Collins Avenue (William Lehman Causeway Entrance)

The week of March 7, 2022, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is scheduled to begin safety upgrades to the crosswalk and signal light at 189 Street and Collins Avenue. Work to be performed includes installing a new mast arm, installing new pedestrian rapid flashing beacons, reconstructing the crosswalk, ramps and sidewalks, enhancing pedestrian and traffic signs and pavement markings, and repaving and restriping the roadway. For updates on this project, visit our webpage at sibfl.net/fdot-crosswalk-project.

After receiving inquiries, we made the FDOT District Six aware of the need for a signal light at this location shortly after the Rectangular Rapid-Flashing Beacon (RRFB) was installed in 2018. We recognized that it was prone to confusing motorists, which caused rear-end accidents, and was less effective at protecting pedestrians. We have been working with FDOT to prioritize this project, however, the COVID-19 pandemic had caused significant delays. We are happy to announce the project is now underway.

Installation of Pedestrian Crossing Signage on Collins Avenue

We have an important update on traffic rules for a few of our Collins Avenue intersections. In September 2021, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) completed the installation of pedestrian crossing signage at the intersections of Collins Avenue and 172, 174 and 183 Street. Motorists are no longer allowed to turn right on red onto Collins Avenue from these intersections. The signage also alerts motorists to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks when turning left on green. We urge everyone to stay alert while driving and to take notice of these new signs at our intersections. The safety of our pedestrians continues to be a top priority for the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department.

Educational Events & Campaigns

Pedestrian & Bicycle Safety Event at the NSE/SIB K-8 School

On Tuesday, October 26 2021, we proudly partnered with the Florida Department of Transportation and the University of Miami to host a special presentation on Bike and Pedestrian Safety at the NSE/SIB K-8 school. We were able to learn from each other how to stay safe on the road and the role we all play in keeping our community safe. With education and enforcement, we can work together to enhance pedestrian safety in our city.

Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Forum with FDOT & Miami-Dade County

On Thursday, March 25, 2021, we hosted a Pedestrian & Bicycle Safety Forum where residents shared their questions, comments, and concerns with City, County and State representatives. We look forward to evaluating the ideas discussed and working with FDOT to prioritize the viable options.

School Safety Night at NSE/SIB K-8 School

On Tuesday, March 23, 2021, Sergeant Estevez spoke to NSE/SIB K-8 students and their parents about pedestrian and bicycle safety at a School Safety Night event.

Alert Today, Alive Tomorrow Digital Media Campaign

The Sunny Isles Beach Police Department is a partner in the Florida Department of Transportation’s (FDOT) Alert Today, Alive Tomorrow campaign. The campaign is a focused effort that aims to increase awareness of pedestrians and bicycles on roadways and sidewalks. You can find campaign messaging on our Facebook and Twitter social media pages, or by visiting alerttodayflorida.com.

Distracted Driving Digital Media Campaign

The Sunny Isles Beach Police Department is a partner in the Florida Department of Transportation’s (FDOT) Put it Down Distracted Driving Awareness Campaign. The campaign is a focused effort to raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving. You can find campaign messaging on our Facebook and Twitter social media pages, or by visiting fdotmiamidade.com/putitdown.

Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Program 

Created in 2010, this Program consistently promotes safety measures and awareness in our community. The Program has hosted more than 50 community events with these goals in mind. In 2018, the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department began a formal effort to increase traffic enforcement and implement zero-tolerance for law breakers.

Our Off-Collins Bicycle Route is an excellent way to travel north or south through Sunny Isles Beach while mostly avoiding busy Collins Avenue. This interior route provides residents with a safer alternate option for walking or biking around the city, which is a substantial improvement to pedestrian safety.

Public Engagement

We asked residents to submit their comments, questions and concerns regarding safety on the road. We received 17 new public comment cards, totaling 48 public comments thus far.

These comments included 27 recommendations for road safety improvements along with 18 statements expressing the need to correct drivers’ behaviors. Two viable suggestions mentioned were the use of automated enforcement controls such as speed detection and red light cameras. We are pleased to announce that both of these concepts are in progress and updates on them will be shared as details are confirmed.

Additional highlights from these public comments included:

  • All 48 public comment cards agreed that safer streets must be a top priority for our area.
  • We received 27 recommendations for road safety improvements, some of which are already in progress or in discussion with FDOT and MDC.
  • 18 individuals expressed the need to correct driver’s behaviors including the need to eliminate right turns on red, drivers running red lights, and speeding on our roads.
  • 14 comments emphasized that pedestrians and bicyclists must also follow the rules of the road and should be held accountable if they are not.
  • 9 individuals felt that that an increase in police presence and enforcement on our roads was needed, while 7 individuals expressed gratitude for the Sunny Isles Beach Police Department’s increased efforts. 3 individuals also felt that the increased presence made them more aware of their own behaviors.
  • 9 individuals felt that safety on our roads was a shared responsibility among all users including motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists (including skateboarders and scooters).
  • 6 individuals felt that a dedicated bike lane on Collins Avenue was needed, while 4 individuals felt that bicyclists need to be off-Collins for the safety of pedestrians.

Traffic Safety Tips

Please review these guidelines to ensure a safer experience in Sunny Isles Beach for residents and visiting pedestrians, cyclists and vehicular traffic. The speed limit on both state roads, Collins Avenue and Sunny Isles Boulevard, is 35 miles per hour. The speed limit on all side streets in the City is 20 miles per hour. At designated times, in school zones, the speed limit is enforced at 15 miles per hour.

 On the Road

  • Remember: pedestrians always have the right-of-way
  • Use caution when turning and look both ways to ensure a pedestrian is not in a crosswalk
  • When the pedestrian crossing light is flashing, vehicles MUST stop; it’s the law
    • Keep in mind that a pedestrian crosswalk may be mid-block, not only at intersections
  • Vehicles must come to a complete stop in both directions when a school bus is stopped with flashing lights
  • No stopping or standing is permitted in driving lanes
  • Always wear a seat belt in the car
  • Do not text while operating a motor vehicle. Distracted driving is dangerous and texting while driving is illegal. Florida Statute 316.305 allows law enforcement to stop motor vehicles and issue citations to motorists that are texting while driving. 
  • Florida Statute 316.306 prohibits the use of wireless communication devices in a handheld manner in school and work zones. An active work zone means that construction personnel are present or are operating equipment on the road or immediately adjacent to the work zone area. 

On the Sidewalk

  • Never assume a vehicle will stop for you; do not rely on drivers to see you
  • Walk on sidewalks and do not leave the curb suddenly
  • Cross at intersections with traffic lights featuring a lighted ‘walking person’
  • City Ordinance 2014-432 prohibits skateboards and hoverboards on sidewalks along Collins Avenue and Sunny Isles Boulevard

On a Bicycle

  • Bicyclists may ride from Heritage Park in the north end of the City to Gateway Park in the south with only a short traverse onto Collins Avenue near Publix
  • Always wear a bike helmet properly
  • To be more visible to motorists use front and back flashing lights
  • Use hand signals when turning or slowing to a stop
  • While bicycles should have the right-of-way, make eye contact with drivers to understand their intentions

What’s New

North Bay Road Pedestrian Bridge & Gateway Pedestrian Bridge

  • These two bridges provide alternative routes to walking on the busy Collins Avenue and Sunny Isles Boulevard.

Government Center Pedestrian Crosswalk

  • This mid-block, signalized crosswalk allows easy access to safely traverse Collins Avenue. In the future, the City plans to construct two pedestrian bridges over Collins Avenue.

The Meaning of Pedestrian Signals 

If you wish to cross the street, you must push the crosswalk button and wait for the walking person signal before crossing.

Walking person symbol

  • Stays on about 7 to 15 seconds
  • ACTION: Walk briskly across the crosswalk.

Flashing hand symbol

  • Counts down by seconds
  • ACTION: Consider where you are before you take action. If you are in the middle of the crosswalk, keep walking briskly. If you are standing on the curb, stop. DO NOT start crossing; wait for the next walk signal. The flashing red hand tells you there is not enough time to begin walking.

NON-flashing hand symbol

  • ACTION: DO NOT WALK
  • Wait for the Walking Person signal to flash. Your safety is worth a few seconds more of wait time.