“Unsuspecting Drivers” Caught Zooming Past Staten Island School

Here’s something you’d like to see more of from the NYPD: Cops cracking down on speeders near a school zone. Reports the Staten Island Advance:

Staten Island’s newest speed trap is snaring unsuspecting drivers who
must drop from a highway speed of 50 mph to 30 mph on the off-ramp, to
a 20-mph crawl outside a school zone off the South Avenue exit of the
Staten Island Expressway.

Police have been issuing summonses to lead-footed drivers who missed
or ignored the new diamond-shaped yellow signs alongside Goethals Road
North in Graniteville, where the new Staten Island School of Civic
Leadership for grades K-8 opened earlier this month.

The tickets were given out as part of a targeted enforcement
initiative, police said. While officers won’t be outside the school
every day, it will be on their rotating list of "hot spots," because of
the nature of the school zone, and because a pedestrian was hit on the
street in the past.

So, enforcing the speed limit near an area swarming with kids — everyone can get behind that, right? Not if you identify with those "unsuspecting drivers" more than the K-8 students who have to navigate the streets near their school. Proving that no form of traffic enforcement can avoid scorn from a certain subset of motorists, many Advance commenters take the speed trap as evidence of a city campaign to "milk the taxpayer."

As irresponsible as it may be to call speed enforcement a revenue-generating exercise, some of the complainers kind of have a point. This stretch of Goethals Road North is definitely sending some mixed signals. Those 20 mph school zone signs compete for drivers’ attention with huge green highway signs on a street that looks designed for maximal vehicular flow. The stepped-up enforcement is great, and let’s hope the cops keep it up, because the students at the School of Civic
Leadership need it. They also need a street designed to put drivers on notice that doing 40 is totally wrong and unacceptable.

  • Paul

    The problem with wide straight roads. Why don’t they make them so it’s impossible to speed?

  • Omri

    The city SNAFUd this. Speed limits have to be black on white. Black on yellow’s advisory.

  • Omri’s right, I’d protest the ticket and I’d win.

  • Omri’s right.

    Nevertheless, 20mph is not a @#$% “crawl,” dear Robert McCormick and Maura Yates of the SI Advance; it’s the speed you reach after falling off a two-story building: http://www.ellisclinic.com/lowspeed/index.htm

  • Car Free Nation

    Perfect spot for a speed hump.

  • Omri

    It’s also a pretty damn bad spot for a school. Kids should not spend 8 hours a goddamn day on the edge of a major highway. Ghetto asthma is a sign of malign neglect on part of our governments.

  • Unit

    Yeah, these are advisory signs, not regulatory, and have no legal meaning. These tickets should be thrown out. As someone who firmly believes in lower speeds = safer driving, I’d be ticked off too. They need to post School Zone Speed Limit signs. Duh.

  • While the sign might be “advisory” isnt the law ALWAYS 20MPH in a school zone during class hours?

    For example, if I were to put an advisory sign that says “stop at red light” how can you argue that it was just advisory if the law ALWAYS says stop on red light?

  • Jass: That’s because you wouldn’t create an advisory “stop at red light” sign. If you’ll notice, “no right on red” and “stop here on red” signs are regulatory signs. Advisory signs hold no weight in court, as they’re just that – advisory. You can’t cite someone for driving off a cliff if there’s a yellow diamond sign warning of the curve… unless they were also speeding in defiance of the black-on-white speed limit sign.

  • Chris O’Leary, let me put it this way: If there was a blue sign that said “school” couldnt they be ticketed anyway, because school = slow?

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