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franklin county times

Slow down!… Police crack down on speed

By Staff
IS IT SAFE YET? Carver Middle School children battle heavy morning and afternoon traffic each day on Eighth Street, where the speed limit is 15 mph during school hours. Photo by Marianne Todd/The Meridian Star
By Marianne Todd/The Meridian Star
April 9, 2001
Meridian motorists who blindly speed past schools these days are likely to be ticketed through a Meridian Police Department initiative to enforce speed laws in school safety zones.
Police say residents should take the warning seriously.
Johnson said motorists shouldn't be surprised to find officers manning radar at school zones during normal school transportation hours.
Johnson said the initiative began after Capt. Tommy Miller approached him with concerns about motorists' negligence of the law.
Johnson said he could not pinpoint any specific problem areas. High traffic areas such as Eighth Street near Carver Middle School where the speed zone is 15 mph during school transportation hours will receive the same attention as speed zones in quieter neighborhoods, he said.
Motorists need to remember children have a harder time seeing drivers and vice versa since children are short, he said. Drivers also need to be mindful that parked or moving cars, buses or bushes can create visual obstructions.
Children also have immature peripheral vision, about a third narrower than an adults, and they also have difficulty in judging speed and distance, Johnson said.
Parents can do their part by showing children the safest route to walk to school and by teaching them to observe traffic rules at an early age, he said.
Johnson said motorists who think they're safe at the conclusion of this school year had better beware in the fall when officers take up the school zone speed law initiative again.
Marianne Todd is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. E-mail her at mtodd@themeridianstar.com.