By Ralph Zeltman
Mayor John P. “Jack” Seiler
City of Fort Lauderdale
100 North Andrews Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33301
SUBJECT: Dr. MLK, Jr. Day Tarnished by Motorcycles and ATV’s
Dear Honorable Mayor Seiler:
There are many Americans who celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to pay respect to this great American civil rights leader and are looking forward to the next holiday scheduled on January 16, 2017. The previous two years on MLK, Jr. Day have been tarnished by hooligans on motorcycles and ATV’s (all-terrain vehicles) that have raced dangerously through city streets and interstate highways in South Florida.
Hopefully this year the various law enforcement agencies will proactively unite to form a task force to implement measures in suppressing this large group of unsafe and reckless drivers from replicating what appears to have become an annual event as witnessed during the previous years involving more than 500 vehicles. There have been so many bikes and ATV’s that police were outnumbered and could not effectively control them and were fearful in jeopardizing the lives of other drivers and their passengers along with pedestrians and also risking their own lives during this unruly mob activity. These folks seem to have been organizing in Miami-Dade before travelling northward via I-95 into Broward County invading the City of Fort Lauderdale as well as other cities along their rampage ride. My understanding is some of these participants have even traveled from other states to partake in this unlawful ride event.
This activity is illegal and must be stopped when they violate numerous traffic laws, State Statutes, Chapter 316, in driving recklessly through traffic on the streets and highways and especially risking harm to our citizens, some of these ATV drivers do not possess driver licenses or have legal vehicle license plates.
We trust the City will take appropriate action in concert with the Broward County Sheriff’s Office and the Florida State Highway Patrol to implement the necessary controls to suppress and discourage these individuals from taking over the highways and streets in our communities. These reoccurring activities have already resulted into a serious casualty last year and action needs immediate attention before January 16, 2017, to allow law enforcement to institute appropriate action in controlling this situation.
Honorable Mayor Seiler,
Thanking you in advance for your anticipated action to prevent this undesirable situation from reoccurring.
Ralph C. Zeltman
cc: Vice Mayor, Commissioner Dean J. Trantalis
Commissioner Robert L. McKenzie
Commissioner Bruce G. Roberts
Commissioner Romney Rogers
City Manager Lee Feldman
City Police Chief Frank Adderley