Orlando leading the Nation in Pedestrian accidents

Lisa Bell from WKMG tv 6 took to the streets with Her little experiment recently and found that not many cars stopped for pedestrians in the cross walk. At one time She came from behind a car but still expected People to see around that car and stop for Her.

Sgt Richard Ruth radios to  a group of cops down the street as cars go by Him that never see Him. Why would someone drive looking to the curb?
Sgt Richard Ruth radios to a group of cops down the street as cars go by Him that never see Him. Why would someone drive looking to the curb?

It is a common news story about a Person hit and killed on Orange Blossom Trail, John Young Parkway, Hwy 192, Hwy 535 or 536 and many others. Many are hit and runs but rarely is it the fault of the driver, most of these accidents are in areas that do not have a cross walks and are not legal for pedestrians to cross. Many are at night and the pedestrian is impaired or dressed in dark clothing. Rarely is it in a cross walk.

But the News story by WKMG triggered another cross walk crack down and of course it netted as many violations as the cops could write. It would have been far easier to stop the cars that did obey the cross walk and give them a medal for seeing the man with the walkie talkie standing on the curb yelling at cars. That Man was a plains clothes cop, Sgt Richard Ruth and was using His radio to tell the cops down the road Who to ticket, which was just about Everyone. I would bet all my money that You could follow Sgt Richard Ruth or Lisa Bell (the reporter) for a few days and find Him/Her doing the exact same thing, maybe on a different road but it would happen. Everyone is doing it, so it must be the fault of the signage, the cross walk, the lack of lights or just the fact that it is impossible to drive and watch the sides of the street constantly to see if Someone is standing there. The time it takes to look at the side of the roadways is the time it takes to send a text so doing so is just as dangerous. The only way that a cross walk can be protected is with overhead red lights or at least flashing yellow lights when a pedestrian pushes a button. If You see a Person on the side of the road waiting to cross in a cross walk do You stop suddenly? Let the car in back of You slam into You? Can the car in back of You see the pedestrian or is his view obstructed? All these decisions could be made if there was 300 feet of warning instead of 50 or if Everyone was going 5mph.

If You get a ticket for this offense it is very costly. The ticket itself isn’t near as expensive as the 3 points put on Your license. Your insurance will definitely go up and it will take years for it to go back down. I would urge You to fight this ticket in court and do not stop at the local level. This is an ubsurd expectation of a driver to know When Someone is walking up to the curb.

Lisa Bell comes out from behind a car that has a suv in back of it. the driver cannot see Her until He has already passed Her but She thinks He should stop
Lisa Bell comes out from behind a car that has a suv in back of it. the driver cannot see Her until He has already passed Her but She thinks He should stop

There is only one solution to this problem

If You travel Universal Blvd from Sand Lake to International Drive You know that there is a very annoying traffic light right at the Best Western. That traffic light is there for no other purpose except to allow Wet and Wild employees to cross the street. As much money as Wet and Wild makes they should have had to build a pedestrian bridge there instead of allowing each Person to stop traffic with a red light but if the City thinks it is that important, We have to live with it.


So if People are too lazy to walk to the nearest traffic light to get a protected signal and they think there is enough pedestrians crossing then ask the City to either put a stop sign at that crossing, a traffic light or a pedestrian bridge, only that will keep People safe.

Dr Phillips Performing Arts Center not what Tax payers need to be supporting

The average metro Orlando or Orange County citizen will never step foot in the Dr Phillips Performing Arts Center in Downtown Orlando. The chances of a Person that pays taxes in Orange County visiting the Amway Center, the Citrus Bowl or the new Soccer Stadium are much more likely. The sports venues appeal to the masses that live in Orange County, the Performing Arts center appeal to the one percent that should pay for it themselves. Mayor Theresa Jacobs was quick to tell Mayor Dyer She thought it would be a good idea to use some of the money saved on the Soccer Stadium on the Performing Arts Center, a very narrow minded idea. The Arts Center is a great place for politicians to meet and greet millionaires in their formal gowns and tuxedos. The vast majority of People living in Orange county will never put on formal wear and are happy about it.
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win a disney trip from wendy williams

Tiered Pricing for Disney World being discussed

When I first heard of this idea of tiered pricing for Disney World, I thought, this is something that Seaworld has already done and it was a great idea. Yes, I am all for Disney offering a 70 dollar ticket for weekdays and off months. The whole month of January and February could be 50 dollars per day, right? WRONG! Leave it to Disney to use this great idea to raise all prices not lower prices. So in order to cut down crowds at the busiest times, Disney is proposing a ticket INCREASE up to 125.00 per day. The 125 dollar ticket would be good anytime then the current 105 dollar ticket would only be good on a weekday or an off time of the year.

This type of surge pricing was no doubt taken from the playbook of ride share Uber and Lyft. It had a very bad reception from customers there and it will do so in the theme park world also.

Orlando City Soccer debut in the orlando citrus bowl

Orlando City Duped Mayor Buddy Dyer out of tens of millions of dollars

Mayor Buddy Dyer was duped by Orlando City Soccer Team. Buddy Dyer is no business Man and I for one did not elect Him to speak for my money and am not sure that He has the legal right to. The mayor is for handshaking, kissing babies and issuing the key to the City, certainly not for making multi million dollar decisions. The recent decision He made on the Orlando City Soccer stadium is proof that He is no business Man. To His credit there are so many short sided non business thinking People telling Him He cannot support a larger stadium and He cannot use taxpayer money to give anymore support to Orlando City. After having that in His ear daily when Orlando City offered to pay for the Soccer Stadium themselves He jumped at the chance. Now He is off the hot seat.

Orlando City will now buy the property from the City at a “fair price” and build the stadium with their own money. So why is that not a good deal for the City of Orlando? The City of Orlando will now get nothing when the Orlando City plays in Downtown Orlando. The Soccer team will now keep 100 percent of all revenue that the stadium produces, including concessions, ticket sales and apparel sales. And not to mention the Soccer team will now compete with the Amway Center for concerts and big events that need big space. There are many events that need more space than the Amway Center and less than the Citrus Bowl and now the City will get NOTHING. The only thing the City of Orlando will get that they would not get before is property tax, big deal!!

How did this happen? When The Orlando City Soccer team got started they were unsure how many People would be interested in Soccer so they wanted the City of Orlando to own the stadium just like most cities do. At that point why would they want to risk 125 million to have average turn out and not be able to turn a profit? But then the City of Orlando turned out to the games in big fashion and suddenly this stadium was going to be a gold mine but Mayor Dyer was not paying attention or He doesn’t know how to use a spreadsheet but Orlando City Soccer team sure does. So they decided it would be a great investment to own the stadium themselves and keep 100 percent of the profit instead of sharing it with the City of Orlando. DUH!

It is like going to a horse race and not wanting to waste money on the 30-1 horse that You think has no chance of winning. Then the horse is winning by 25 lengths on the home stretch and Your drunk friend says “I’ll still give you 30-1 on that horse if You want to bet”.

february 23, 2015 weather orlando florida

Beautiful Orlando Weather but Orlando Airport full of Cancelled Flights

Many visitors are going to OIA only to be turned away. The weather in Orlando is so nice that People are forgoing the usual status check of their flights. Normally People heading to the airport check status if the weather is bad but keep in mind that planes that are coming from Boston, Chicago or a number of other Cities that are having snow storms can lead to cancelled flights in Orlando.

february 23, 2015 weather orlando florida
don’t let the good weather fool You
buddy-dyer-alloverorlando

Mayor Dyer and City Council not concerned with DUI in Orlando

 

The number of DUI’s in the Orlando area is much like the rest of America but Mayor Dyer and the City Council seem to be okay with the number and not interested in lowering it. They also act uninterested in lowering the number of accidents caused by People driving under the influence. This is evident from the conclusion of the recent ride share meeting between Uber, Lyft and the City of Orlando. There is proof that since ride sharing has been implemented into numerous Cities the DUI’s in those Cities have decreased by 11 percent. That is likely at least a number of deaths that did not occur because of ride sharing. Even if it was ONE death, it was worth it. But not to Orlando City leaders, they just do not get it. Their solution for Ride Share companies is to let them operate in Orlando but charge 25 percent more than taxi’s. Even the City leaders had a smirk on their face when they said that, there was not enough rehearsal to make that statement without a smirk. They might as well say ride sharing is okay as long as it is on a motorcycle.

And MADD, a very strong nationwide group is very angry about the hassles that are being given to the ride share companies:

A recent statement from MADD:

“MADD supports new ridesharing platforms like Uber, Lyft and Sidecar as well as traditional taxi services that are enabling more options to provide safe rides in communities across the country,” J.T. Griffin, MADD’s chief government affairs officer, wrote in an open letter to state lawmakers.

“While the best way to stop drunk driving is to couple strong drunk driving laws with strong DUI enforcement and educating the public on the consequences of breaking these laws, it is also important for those over the age of 21 to have a safe ride should they go out to consume alcoholic beverages,” MADD wrote in its letter. –

See the rest of what MADD said about Ride Sharing

uber all over orlando

Uber follows Lyft, cuts prices all over Orlando

Sign up for a new Uber account then use the promo code na4u4 to get a free ride up to 30 dollars.

On Friday, October 17, 2014 Uber users got great news via email in the way of reduced prices. Price has never been an issue for Uber users in Orlando but Uber reduced prices anyway and would not say what the real reason was. The email said that they are reducing prices to be in line with Tampa pricing so users visiting each location would have the same pricing. But the real reason is their main competition, Lyft reduced their prices a few weeks ago.
The bad news for Lyft is when reducing prices they also either lost full time drivers or drivers cut back on their hours. Drivers that went through the reduced pricing with Lyft said that the new pricing is now their break even point and the only way they can make money is to participate in the company’s bonus plan. The bonus plan allows drivers to earn back the commission that Lyft takes from every ride.

When Uber sent out the email to the riders, they did the same for their drivers. It is ironic that they had to tell their drivers that they would be making less money only weeks after telling them how foolish they would be to drive for lyft since lyft cut their prices. So Uber had to say that the reason for the reduction in pricing was to match the rates in Tampa, never mentioning Lyft as the real reason.

Now the competition is for drivers, since many will quit after this round of price drops. Lyft is allowing riders to tip their drivers through their app, Uber has not said anything about tips but in the past did not allow it. Uber has not set up a program to earn back commission. Will there be drivers available for either service? Only time will tell but it is very likely both companies will have to increase prices at least back to what they were in order to have enough drivers to give riders good service.

Originally Uber provided rides at a very fair price for the rider and driver but now the price is so low it is hard to pay expenses for the driver and Tips are appreciated, still not requested or expected.

uber all over orlando

Is it safe to use Uber in Orlando?

Sign up for a new Uber account then use the promo code na4u4 to get a free ride up to 30 dollars.

Everyone that knows about Uber has heard that they require drivers to undergo background checks as well as a DMV records check. But until now I have not been able to find what the tolerance of the findings were. I found this article:

Answering readers’ questions about the Uber car service
By Paul Brinkmann

The most important part of the article regarding the safety of Uber is copied word for word here:

Q.Why should riders feel safe with an Uber driver? Aren’t taxi drivers safer because that is their primary profession and they are licensed through the city?

Uber: Uber offers a variety of safeguards to connect riders to the safest rides on the road. All Uber driver partners must go through a rigorous three-step background check which includes county, federal and multi-state checks. Our background checking process and standards are consistent across the United States and used throughout all Uber products including UberX. … All drivers are screened against: County and federal court records going back seven years, a multi-state criminal database check going back seven years, the National Sex Offender Registry, a Social Security Trace (lifetime) and motor vehicle records check. (Historical and ongoing). Drivers must meet the following criteria: No convictions for violent crimes, sexual offenses, or felonies in the past seven years; No convictions of theft or property damage in the past seven years; no drug or DUI charges in the past seven years; No severe driving violations such as hit-and-run, driving over 100 mph, driving on a suspended/revoked license, or driving on the wrong side of a divided highway; and no driving without insurance or suspended license charge in the past 3 years. Riders also have the option to rate every driver.

Another topic has been coming up often: Insurance. The state of Florida was asked to look at the insurance policy that Uber carries and asked if it was adequate to cover riders. In this article in the Tampa Bay times, it was determined that Uber had more than enough coverage. More than was legally required by taxi’s. Once a rider starts a trip there is a one million dollar policy in effect.

The Article by Paul Brinkmann ask more questions about Uber that are interesting reading.

Sign up for a new Uber account then use the promo code na4u4 to get a free ride up to 30 dollars.

International and Universal can have thousands of walkers daily.

Orlando number one in Pedestrian Deaths

International and Universal can have thousands of walkers daily.
International and Universal can have thousands of walkers daily.

The recent hit and run death of a pedestrian on South Bumby is just another headline. People all over Orlando do not even read the full story when the headline is about a pedestrian death. What is the possible reason for Orlando being number one in America for number of pedestrian deaths? Well, 59 million People visited Orlando in 2013 so that might have a lot to do with it. The other thing and maybe the most important is the lack of knowledge the pedestrian and driver has. There is no clear cut rule for crossing the street for the walker or the driver. Take International drive for instance, this tourist area is heavily walked by thousands daily but the right of way is very confusing. There are a few areas where a crossing signal can be activated by the walker, half of the drivers stop for it but the other half have no idea what is happening. Then close by are crossing areas that have no signal, are drivers suppose to stop for these also? No One knows for sure but most drivers do not stop. Very nearby these crossings without signals are traffic lights, all drivers know they must stop there. Why are they providing these extra crossing lanes so close to the ones that Everyone understands?
The other possible reason Orlando is number one in pedestrian deaths is the darkness of Orlando. I do not think I have ever seen so many dark streets as Orlando. Even in tourist areas the streets are very dark, this is terrible for the driver to see pedestrians and is no place to walk. Typically walkers do not wear blinking lights on their clothing so the driver cannot see them, especially if they cross the street in one of those dark spots.

uber all over orlando

Uber is a driving force in Orlando

Sign up for a new Uber account then use the promo code na4u4 to get a free ride up to 30 dollars.

Uber came to Orlando around the beginning of July, 2014 and has already saved many drunk driving arrest. How many? We will never know but it is a fact that People are choosing Uber all over Orlando to avoid the possibility of drinking and driving. There are many reasons to use Uber but to avoid drinking and driving is the best one. Of course the reason that People are choosing to use Uber over a taxi is mostly the price but also the reliability. We have all called for taxi service and it took forever or didn’t show up at all. That never happens with Uber, You get to see the progress with Your driver all the way to pick up. Once Your driver accepts You as a pick up they proceed to pick You up, they cannot pick up Someone else in the meantime like a taxi could. If Your driver is taking too long with Uber, You can cancel that ride and choose another, You cannot do that with a taxi. There is NO Tipping with Uber, that keeps the total fare even lower.

uber all over orlandoOne day You can tell Your Children there used to be this service that had these yellow cars that overcharged You for a ride and gave You horrible service and wanted a tip to do so. The same way that We can tell them now that a place called Blockbuster used to overcharge Us to rent video tapes and give Us horrible service. Karma is indeed a Bitch!

Sign up for a new Uber account then use the promo code na4u4 to get a free ride up to 30 dollars.