Can You Get Arrested for Reckless Driving?

Reckless driving in Florida is a serious traffic offense unlike a speeding ticket or running a red light. It denotes behavior that is more than just negligence or a lack of attention; it is the wanton or willful disregard for the safety of others. In most instances, you will be arrested for reckless driving.

Examples of Reckless Driving

  • Weaving at high speeds in traffic
  • Driving at speeds significantly above the posted speed limit or for the conditions
  • Racing on a roadway
  • Driving with evidence or under the influence of alcohol or drugs in your system
  • Disobeying traffic signs
  • Distracted driving

While ignoring a stop sign or traffic signal or making an illegal turn may only earn you a traffic ticket, you can be charged with reckless driving if these acts resulted in an accident or was so wanton as to threaten the lives and safety of others. In these situations, your chances of being arrested will increase to a near certainty.


Reckless driving is a second degree misdemeanor in Florida, which carries up to 90 days in jail and a fine up to $500.

If this is not your first reckless driving offense, you face up to 6 months in jail and a fine up to $1,000.

However, if your reckless driving conduct led to property damage, you face a first degree misdemeanor charge, which carries a maximum jail sentence of up to one year. one years’ probation and a $1000 fine.

Should your conduct result in serious bodily injury to someone, your reckless driving charge can be enhanced to a third degree felony with possible penalties of up to 5 years in prison, 5 years’ probation and a $10,000 fine.