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Road Ranger service expands – Columbia, Suwannee, Hamilton, Madison, Alachua Counties
Free service benefits motorists in need of assistance on Florida roadways.

The Road Ranger service is a welcomed help in time of need. -Photo: Courtesy FDOT

FDOT and Staff Reports

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is continuing to expand its Road Ranger program in Northeast Florida, adding an additional route in Alachua County and implementing two new areas of service on Interstate 75 and Interstate 10.

  Two Road Ranger trucks are scheduled to begin patrol on Interstate 75, between U.S. 441 (Exit 414) in Alachua County and State Road 143 (Exit 467) in Hamilton County, on July 9. These Road Ranger vehicles will provide service to motorists traveling on Interstate 75 in Hamilton, Suwannee, and Columbia counties. This service will be available from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday.

  FDOT is also launching a new service in the Gainesville area this week called Rapid Incident Scene Clearance (RISC) Lite that is designed to improve safety and roadway efficiency.

A second Road Ranger truck was recently launched in Alachua County, bringing the county total to two vehicles providing that service. These Road Rangers provide service between County Road 234 (Exit 374) and U.S. 441 (Exit 414) in Alachua County. Alachua County Road Ranger service is seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

  Additionally, Interstate 10 Road Ranger service, between State Road 53 (Exit 258) in Madison County and U.S. 301 (Exit 343) in Duval County, is also scheduled to begin this month. This service will be available Monday through Friday and from 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. from State Road 53 (Exit 258) to U.S. 41 (Exit 301) and from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. from U.S. 41 (Exit 301) to U.S. 301 (Exit 343).

  The Road Ranger program provides free highway support services during incidents to reduce delay and improve safety for motorists. Since the program’s inception in 2000, the Road Rangers have made more than 4.3 million service assists, with more occurring daily. Road Rangers provide services to motorists by quickly clearing travel lanes of minor incidents and assisting motorists, which include providing a limited amount of fuel, assisting with tire changes, and other types of minor emergency repairs.

  Motorists can request Road Ranger service by dialing *347 (*FHP).

  In coordination with the Florida Highway Patrol, the RISC Lite vehicle will be able to remove disabled vehicles due to crashes, ranging in sizes from personal vehicles to box trucks, from the travel lanes. This is done in an effort to reduce secondary crashes on the interstate as well as provide quicker scene clearance and a faster return to typical travel flow.

  RISC Lite will complement the traditional RISC program, which is designed to remove larger vehicles, such as semi-trucks, from travel lanes is tentatively scheduled to begin on this week.