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Florida Drug, Alcohol and Traffic Awareness (DATA) Course

To get a Florida learner's permit or your first driver's license, you must complete a Drug, Alcohol and Traffic Awareness (DATA) course that is approved by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.

The drug and alcohol course, also known as the Traffic Law and Substance Abuse Education (TLSAE) course, is required regardless of your age.

People under 21 who had their license suspended for driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.02 to 0.05 are also required to take the drug and alcohol course. After completing the course, these drivers can apply for a hardship license or request to have their license reinstated. A hardship license restricts your travel to driving to and from work.

To make it easier to meet your drug and alcohol course requirement, you can enroll in the course online and complete the training using your computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone. The drug and alcohol course takes approximately four hours to complete, and you can finish it over multiple sessions by logging on and off as needed. 24/7 support is also provided for your convenience.

Why Is the DATA Course Required in Florida?

The DATA course aims to make roads safer for the more than 16 million licensed drivers in Florida. A new driver may not understand how even small doses of drugs or alcohol can significantly impair driving.

This creates danger not only to the driver, but also to passengers, pedestrians and other drivers on the road. The DATA course was implemented to educate drivers about traffic laws and the dangers of driving under the influence (DUI). Did you know that a DUI conviction will remain on your driving record for 75 years?

Drinking and Driving vs. Drugged Driving

In the state of Florida, you are considered driving impaired whether you are under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. Driving under the influence of illicit drugs can result in the same serious penalties as those associated with an alcohol-related DUI.

You could lose your license, receive heavy fines, pay much higher insurance rates or end up in jail. It is important to know the law. The DATA course explains the legal consequences of impaired driving.

Prescription Drugs and Over-the-Counter Medications

While it is perfectly legal to take over-the-counter drugs or doctor-prescribed medications, it is important to understand that some medications can impair your driving. These include allergy and cold medications that you buy at a drug store.

You should always read and take seriously warnings on your medication before operating a vehicle. If you are not sure about a medication, ask your pharmacist or doctor about the side effects.

Bad Judgment

Alcohol, illegal drugs and controlled substances such as marijuana can all affect your judgment. You might get a false sense of confidence and might even feel that you are more alert. But your judgment will be affected whether you feel like it has been or not.

The DATA course covers the physical and mental effects of drugs and alcohol, including dangerous side effects. You may have problems determining distances, speed and the movement of vehicles, and your perception of time may be altered. Your reaction time can decrease, and you may feel drowsy.

Meeting Florida Drug and Alcohol Course Requirements

You can meet Florida's drug and alcohol course requirements by completing the course online. At the end of the course, you must pass a final exam.

After completing the DATA course, you will understand the risks and consequences of impaired driving. You'll also learn potentially life-saving information about drugs and alcohol, traffic awareness and your legal responsibilities as a Florida driver.

It is easy to meet this state requirement – simply register for the online course to get started.