Local News

Speeding Motorists Create Dangerous Situation For Students Heading To School

Posted September 11, 2000

— Thousands of children in Fayetteville make their way to school and face dangers every morning from speeding drivers. Police are having a hard time keeping up with the pace.

Mary Pasztor, a crossing guard forCumberland County Schools, sees hundreds of children home safely. Although she loves her job at times, she says she feels nervous.

"I feel my life's in danger as well as my children that I have to cross the street with," she says.

At Fayetteville Academy, cars are supposed to travel 25 mph in the school zone. Pasztor says she has seen cars go as fast as 20 miles over that speed limit, and that scares her as well as parents.

"I don't think they abide by the laws because I know it's 25, but I see people going through there pretty fast," says parent Karaleen McMillian.

Fayetteville police say the problem is too many school zones and not enough officers. There are more than 60 school zones within the city limits, but only 26 officers are able to patrol them, and that could change from day to day.

Officer Rick Shannon knows the problems firsthand. He scours school zones twice a day for speeders. He says he needs more help.

"In Fayetteville, you'll never have enough help," he says. "There are too many people driving, and the roads are not designed for the volume of traffic we get on it in a short period of time. It's really bad."

Fayetteville police say they are doing their best to monitor school speed zones. Last week, officers wrote five tickets and a warning within a 30-minute span to drivers speeding in a school zone on Morganton Road.

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