Imagine being stranded on the side of the road. You’ve probably been there before. It sucks. How are you going to get your car off the side of the road? Tire blowout? Simple enough to repair, but those cars whizzing by at 80 miles per hour as your blowout is on the driver’s side of the car.
A lot of times, help can be at your fingertips. The Road Rangers are a valuable asset to the State of Florida, and often can help you out with a simple repair.
Fact Number 1
Road Ranger services are free of charge along interstate highways and expressways.
The Road Rangers’ mission is to provide assistance to motorists. In addition, they also provide a visible presence for other motorists, making such repairs more safe for stranded drivers and the Road Ranger crew themselves.
Fact Number 2
Approximately 5 million assists have been made since the Road Rangers’ inception in 2000.
A growing number of vehicles in the Road Ranger fleet have been added, continuing to grow. This number is expected to go up exponentially over the coming years.
Fact Number 3
The number for Road Ranger assistance is *347 (or *FHP).
This is the main number for the Florida Highway Patrol, who will contact the Road Ranger contractor for that district to render assistance.
Road Ranger hours and availability vary throughout the state. Some areas offer 24-hour, 365-day-per-year service.
Fact Number 4
Road Ranger areas are limited to Interstates, the Florida Turnpike, and select expressways in urban areas.
Limited access roads in Tampa, Miami, Jacksonville, and Orlando have their own roadside assist programs, complete with their own fleets of vehicles, equipment, and personnel.
For now, Road Ranger assistance is not available on US highways, state roads, or other secondary roads.
Fact Number 5
The Road Ranger program is divided into seven separate districts.
The Florida Turnpike is its own district, travelling through but separate from some of the seven districts.
Fact Number 6
When a repair or crash exceeds the services the Road Rangers can offer, Road Rangers can push the vehicle to the nearest safe spot. At that point, the Florida Highway Patrol will contact a towing or repair service.
All services are at the owner’s expense once a third party tow or repair service is contacted.
Fact Number 7
State Farm Insurance is the primary sponsor for the Road Ranger program.
State Farm Insurance began its sponsorship in 2004 with its contract set to expire in June of 2018.
This extra source of funds has allowed for additional trucks as well as an upgrade in the reflective equipment on the trucks, allowing for greater visibility at night.
Fact Number 8
To assist stranded motorists, Road Ranger carry along a set selection of resources.
- 2-ton jack
- Sand, for cleaning up fluid spills
- Air compressor, for flat tires
- Basic automotive fluids
- Jumper cables
- Cell phones. Motorists can make two local calls free of charge.
- Fire extinguishers
- First aid kit
- Flashing arrow board. This advises drivers to shift lanes.
- Public Address System. This allows Rangers to communicate to other drivers in getting to a stranded vehicle
- Water for radiators
- Traffic cones
- Wood blocks. These help in getting vehicles out of muddy or sandy surfaces.
- Tools, such as wrenches, screwdrivers, and sockets. Some drivers have impact wrenches, powered by compressed air, that can ease removal of wheel nuts for changing a tire.
The list is a minimum supply, as some drivers carry additional resourses, such as drinking water.
Fact Number 9
During operating hours, Road Rangers normally arrive at a stranded motorist between 15-30 minutes of the Florida Highway Patrol’s *347 hotline being notified.
In some cases, a phone call is not necessary. Traffic spotters can see disabled vehicles in visible locations and will automatically summon a Road Ranger to provide assistance. With good timing, a Road Ranger can show up in just a few minutes.
Fact Number 10
As the Road Ranger program continues to grow, some counties do not have Road Ranger service available.
Among the counties that yet to have Ranger service are Sumter and Marion counties along Interstate 75. This is due to funding varying from district-to-district and whether a sponsor can be found to help with funds.
24 thoughts on “10 Facts About The Florida Road Rangers”
The Road Rangers are great folks, so courteous and helpful. We are blessed to have them.
I had a blow out once and without a call he was there before I could even get the spare tire out without me calling and that was at 5:30 am. Thanks!
I’m glad to hear the Road Rangers were prompt and didn’t even need to receive a phone call. I see more and more of them now just roving and looking for people in need of assistance. Thanks for reading, Dave!
My tire blew out along I-95 during morning work traffic. As a woman, alone on the side of the road with a flat, I was so happy to see help arrive in literally like 5 minutes max. The two guys were super nice. They parked behind me and put out safety cones. From there they lowered my spare tire and changed out the flat one. I actually made it to my appointment on time !
I’m so grateful this service is available to Florida motorists. I wish more people knew about it. As a woman alone, in the early morning hours with traffic whizzing by, seeing the road rangers is a welcome site. I really hope this service stays in place. Also, a great big thank you to the guys who helped me the other day.
My niece broke down on the FL turnpike night before last. The RoadRanger was there after I went to pick her up. She hadn’t put her emergency signals on prior to me telling her over the phone so I could locate her, nor she did not know to call FHP. But, once she turned her emergency flashers on and I had found her the ranger was there in minutes illustrating he was in the area. He was definitely a sight for sore eyes!
Yesterday my van ran out of gas as I was exiting I-75 at the intersection with route 54. I had no idea that road rangers existed, so I had a friend on the way to help me along. A motorist offered to push my van off to the side because my van wouldn’t roll in neutral on its own despite the incline. Before my friends arrived, road ranger was there and put a gallon of gas into the tank so I could make it around the corner to the 7/11. I am so pleased to find this service available to motorists! The gentleman from FDOT was friendly and quick. Thank you FDOT and State Farm!
Glad to hear about the good outcome with the Road Rangers. I hear so many good stories. Thanks for reading!
Unbelievable service, very impressed! Flat tire today at Exit 19 eastbound SR 528. Struggled with lowering spare and getting it onto truck. Wife suggested calling *FHP (*347). Adam Updike showed up in 10 minutes. He had us on our way in 15 minutes. What a great program! We felt much better when Adam showed up with cones, warning lights, and his professional, friendly manner. Thanks to the Road Ranger Program, thanks to my wife for thinking of it, and mostly, thanks to Adam and his quick, professional response! Can’t say enough about this program and how it adds to highway safety. Thank you!
Just recently I had a blowout on I-75 close to my destination,just got off the phone with AAA when a Ranger named Bill pulled up behind me and was my knight in shining armor on a very hot Friday,I wasn’t aware of this service,thank you so much to all involved,many blessings!
I would like to thank you for your services. My son blew out a tire today on I75 in south Florida. He was determined to do it by himself, but was secretly happy when you showed up. Thank you for making this nervous mom rest a little easier.
Yesterday I was stranded on the highway with a blown tire and had no spare to replace and when I return with a new tire the ranger pulled up behind me with in minutes. So he was watching the traffic and we talked very nice pleasant man. I see them all the time on the highway so thankful for their services.
At least twice I’ve had help from them. Always courteous and helpful. This last time was no exception. I’ve been out of work now and was on my way to Daytona from Ft . Lauderdale 5 stars . Thanks again
Had a flat tire as I just got on exit 138 going south. Walking back to the exit I saw a road ranger tried to wave him down and he totally ignored me. A state trooper seen me coming off of i 95 and I told him my situation. He called the Road Rangers so I walked back to my vehicle and I noticed a orange sticker on my car window. 15 minutes later the Road Ranger showed up stayed in his truck for five minutes then got out and asked me what was my problem. I asked him did you see me trying to wave you down 30 minutes ago was you were coming onto I 95 and he told me that he had an emergency but he had the time to stop and put a sticker on my car. I told him that two of the Lugnuts was on so tight that I could not take them off with my lug wrench and if he could just break the lugs I will put the tire on myself. He went into this mold that they are not allowed to touch BMWs. So I told him never mind I’ll take care of it myself. If I ever break down again on i 95 I will not allow them to touch any of my three vehicles.
Thanks for reading and commenting. I hadn’t heard that before about BMWs. I’ll have to look further into this and see if I can get someone from Road Rangers to comment further.
My wife had a bizarre blowout on the connector between Leroy Selmon Freeway and I-4 in Tampa at 8pm; it was in a hazardous location. Without her calling, the Road Ranger was there within 30 minutes to remove the destroyed tire and put on her spare. He was courteous and very professional. We had just moved to Tampa a few months earlier, and weren’t aware of this program–what a great service for Florida motorists!
I’m glad they were able to help you in such a busy and dangerous location. It is a great service. Thanks for reading and commenting.
In case of emergency roadside services we must consider all kinds of possibilities that can occur. This article has shared some of the important tips on the subject. Thanks for sharing this valuable information.
Thanks for reading! The Road Rangers provide a valuable service.
Thanks for sharing this wonderful article. I definitely needed a reputed name in emergency roadside service and found the best one.
Thanks for reading and commenting!
Today is appreciation day.. Coming home from work my tire blew out. I appreciate that someone was there to help me change my tire free of charge Courtesy of FDOT.. Glad to see my Tax Dollar at work.. (pay your taxes people). Gotta Love America… I did not want to damage my wheels (Deuce/Deuce) by running it flat, I had to pull over right then and there..Far away from the nearest exit In the middle of nowhere on a bridge thing with so many cars zoomin by.. I prayed non of these texters would take me out. I was planning to call the state trooper for safety cones but decided to get on with it in my pressed slacks, button up shirt and tie haha.. I wasn’t expecting for anyone’s help because I never do. Then FDOT “this guy Scott” pulled up, placed his safety cones secured the perimeter like clockwork and offered to change my tire. I continued on to help but he said he got it. Thank you Scott, FDOT, Florida ,Merica USA. Just Glad it wasn’t my wife / mother or any ladies in that situation, Good to see or experience how the system works “sometimes”..Local everyday heroes. Now if this was my Honda on my Honda days, I’d run er home metal on road- @ Ellenton, Florida. Thankyou #Roadrangers #FDOT #Hoorah #Dadmobile
Glad everything worked out for you. Thanks for reading and commenting!
Thank you Scott for helping me get home to my family safely ..
Helping place safety cones and change my tire.
August 8, 2020
Thanks to Scott in Truck 112. I hope he gets to read this one day.
Thanks Road Ranger for help me today, God Bless You!!!