City, American Traffic Solutions Release School Zone Safety PSA

Ofc. Teresa Fuller, 509.835.4568,

Tuesday, January 26, 2016 at 8:31 a.m.

The City of Spokane and American Traffic Solutions (ATS) have released a public service announcement video about Spokane’s School Zone Safety Program to inform the community about this important safety initiative. The video, which is accessible on YouTube, highlights how the school zone speed cameras work, the role of law enforcement, how violations are captured, and the penalties issued.

Watch the video here:

“Speed does kill. Our top four killers right now as far as traffic is concerned in Washington State are speed, no seat belt use, DUI and distracted driving. Speed is definitely on the top of that list,” said Teresa Fuller, PIO officer for the Spokane Police Department. “During our 30-day warning period, we issued over 1,800 speed warnings to drivers. The first week, we averaged 57 violations a day. We’d like to see this number diminish as we remind drivers to slow down.”

After a student was critically injured by a speeding vehicle just blocks from an elementary school in November 2014, city leadership was determined to find a solution to the growing problem of pedestrian safety and speeding in school zones. A resolution passed in December of 2014 called for the placement of Speed Safety Cameras in school zones and the installation of flashing signals to remind drivers of the posted speed limit.

The fine amount is $234 for a vehicle exceeding the 20 mph school speed limit by 6 to 10 mph. Fine amounts increase thereafter on a graduated scale depending upon the violation speed.

“We hope that it is going to slow traffic down and create awareness about safe driving. Hundreds of cars drive erratically and speed through our school zones every year. We hope that this program will raise awareness,” said Mark Sterk, Spokane Schools Director of Public Safety.

Speeding kills and not just on highways. In 2013, speed-related crashes killed 181 people in Washington. Children are especially vulnerable. A pedestrian struck by a car at 20 mph has a 90 percent chance of survival, but the survival rate drops to 50 percent at 30 mph.

ATS President David Roberts said, “ATS is proud to be a part of this important effort by the city of Spokane to improve school zone safety. I urge drivers to view the video and see firsthand how the program works and why it is necessary.”