• Group recommends barriers be installed outside day cares in Orange County


    ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - A new proposal by an Orange County task force could make day care safer for children.
    Around 40,000 cars pass by Shaquanna Benjamin's Pine Hills Road day care center every day. Many of them are traveling fast.
    Just before Christmas one of the cars careened off the road and into her fence.
    Fortunately it happened at night when none of the children she cares for were in the day care's outside play area.
    It could have easily been a scene reminiscent of April's KinderCare crash in Orange County that killed a 4-year-old girl and injured a dozen others.
    Benjamin said that is why she welcomes a new Orange County task force's recommendations on safety for day care centers.
    For the past six months, the task force has been looking into how to best protect children and staff at the centers.
    Their recommendations include a potential ordinance to require barriers be put up at new day cares that sit near busy intersections.
    The task force found that in the past 24 months 72 vehicles have hit homes and businesses.
    The crashes have sent 37 people to hospitals.
    "It could be anybody, any day," said Benjamin.
    Benjamin said it would be a welcome addition to her day care.
    "It's a good idea. Just how do we pay for it? It's going to be very expensive," said Benjamin.

    A possible grant program would help business owners cover the costs of adding barriers.

    The task force is expected to present it's findings to the county commission in February.

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