Parents, Officials Worry About Speeding Traffic Near Fayetteville School

Posted February 16, 2007

— Speeding in school zones is a dangerous trend that's getting worse, according to parents in Fayetteville.

Getting traffic to stop so children can cross is a daily battle in front of St. Patrick’s School. Crossing guard Grover Harris does his best to protect the kids, but he said rivers seem to ignore the flashing lights and signs.

"It frustrates me," Harris said. “There's nothing I can do."

Cindy Kokinda walks her 5-year-old daughter to the school daily. She said it's amazing that there hasn't been a head-on collision.

"It seems like we're moving targets when we are crossing the street,” Kokinda said.

Speeding traffic has gotten so bad that police have turned the school zone into a speed trap. Officers say on average they've written 20 to 30 tickets a day outside St. Patrick’s in the past few weeks. Nevertheless, motorists keep speeding.

Drivers caught speeding probably aren't thrilled by the extra police protection. But St. Patrick’s principal, Tom Manion, said he is thankful because he's already witnessed two close calls.

"One Kindergartener stepped out and almost got clipped,” Manion said. “Thank God that didn't happen."

No students have been injured in the area so far. But parents and teachers told WRAL that if authorities can't find a way to make drivers beware, the crosswalk could become an accident scene.

"Somebody will get hurt sooner or later," Kokinda said.

Cumberland County Schools officials compiled a list of the schools that have the most dangerous crossing zones. The schools, listed in no particular order, are:
  • Benjamin J. Martin Accelerated Learning Academy, Reilly Road, Fayetteville
  • Raleigh Road Elementary, Ramsey Street, Linden
  • William H. Owen Elementary School, Raeford Road, Fayetteville
  • Loyd E. Auman Elementary School, Raeford Road, Fayetteville
  • Cliffdale Elementary School, Cliffdale Road, Fayetteville
Each North Carolina municipality can set its own fines for speeding in a school zone. But under state law, violators have three points added to their license.

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  • anonemoose Feb 17, 2007

    "Speeding traffic has gotten so bad that police have turned the school zone into a speed trap. Officers say on average they've written 20 to 30 tickets a day outside St. Patrick’s in the past few weeks. Nevertheless, motorists keep speeding.", says Chritie Lowe....

    Hey Christie, why don't you go back and look up the common definition if "speed trap". That's usually where the speed limit changes with no or very little warning. There are signs and flashing lights to warn on the school zone. If they are writing 20-30 a day in that one school zone, it's definantly not the officer's fault. The only thing the cops need to be doing is putting more officers out, and getting help from the Sheriff and SHP until these bozos learn to slow down.

    And Christie, I bet if you would slow down a tad, you wouldn't find as many "speed traps"..

  • PSPro Feb 16, 2007

    It is obvious that nobody really cares!! If they did, they would not drive like they do!

  • diwanicki Feb 16, 2007

    Both of you have brought up good points. I go through a subdivision to take my kids to school and sometimes people are doing 45 through there. The kids that live there walk to school. I had a parent get mad because i was doing 25. Hello kids crossing the street to get to the crossing gaurd and cross again to get to school. Slow down and save a life or 2. How would you feel if it was your child that got hit?????????

  • PSPro Feb 16, 2007

    This is nothing new to the people who drive thru Fayetteville, on a regular basis! In the morning or afternoon, if you drive down Raeford Rd, you will pass at least 4 schools. Does anybody slow down thru these school zones? Usually one that would be me! I get passed by numerous vehicles, and they are usually giving me dirty looks because I am not traveling at the normal Raeford Rd. traffic speed. And the sad part is the people that are speeding thru these school zones are of an age where they would have school age children. I bet if they observed you speeding thru a school zone at a school where their children went to school they would burn up their phone lines trying to call for Law Enforcement. These are people who only care about getting to work on time. Here is a suggestion leave earlier!

  • stephaniedawn66 Feb 16, 2007

    well if a cop would sit on the side of the road each mornin and afternoon....there would be no children are in different schools and i wave at 2 police officer each trip.... its truely amazing the power a police officer has!