PHOENIX - Phoenix police will be concentrating on school zones starting Tuesday morning to watch for speedy drivers.
The 2012 School Zone Enforcement Program is focusing on the Cactus Park Precinct area.
The precinct covers areas along Interstate 17.
Police said drivers caught speeding in these areas could be fined around $250. If a driver passes a school bus while it’s boarding or dropping off students, he or she can be fined around $480.
Officers say the consequences are worth it to protect children.
"Kids can be very unpredictable, and when you have a high number of vehicles on the roadway you always run the risk of a child darting out in front, or a motorist not seeing a child," Phoenix police Lt. Brian Lee said.
While ABC15 filmed at Sevilla Elementary, our cameras caught several officers stopping speeding motorists in the first few minutes of their operation. There were so many speeders, some of the police stops happened less than a minute apart.
In one day, officers say they've ticketed as many as 30 drivers at a single school. The signs are clearly marked, and there are children everywhere, yet drivers still break the law.
Lee said he has had the unfortunate job of responding to students hit by cars. About a dozen are killed every year near schools.
"It's heart-wrenching,” he said. “The most important thing to remember is that these tragedies are preventable."
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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