Warning Period for School Zone Safety Cameras Starts Tuesday

Ofc. Teresa Fuller, 509.835.4568, tfuller@spokanepolice.org

Monday, November 16, 2015 at 3:31 p.m.

The warning period for Spokane’s School Zone Safety Cameras starts tomorrow. Two cameras, one on Northwest Boulevard and one on Nevada, will start issuing warnings to the registered owner of a vehicle that exceeds the posted speeds in the 20mph school zones at Finch and Longfellow Elementary schools. The warning period will end after winter break on Jan. 4th, 2016, at which time citations will be issued.

Last year, members of Spokane’s City Council voted in support of School Zone Speed Safety Cameras.¬†Tomorrow, Spokane will be implementing a comprehensive pilot program in several school zones, beginning with Longfellow and Finch Elementary Schools.

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.

Speeding is a deadly and costly problem in school zones. A national survey found two-thirds of drivers exceed the posted speed limit in school zones during the 30-minute periods before and after classes. School zone speed safety cameras provide a constant enforcement presence that changes driver behavior for improved community road safety.

“I’m pleased the city has school zone speed safety cameras near our schools. Any countermeasure to get drivers to slow down and be aware of children as they walk to and from school is beneficial,” said Mark Sterk, Director of Security, Safety, and Transportation for Spokane Public Schools.

Speeding kills and not just on highways. In 2010, 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.

Cameras will operate during school hours when the school beacons are flashing to capture images of every vehicle exceeding the school zone speed limit. Signs have been installed to provide warning of the school zone safety cameras.

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