ELYRIA, Ohio (WJW) — Does it seem like you’ve noticed more dangerous drivers? Elyria Police Department has.
Complaints of some drivers going 40 miles per hour over the speed limit in school zones, and drivers dangerously blowing through red lights have led Elyria police to trying something they’ve never done.
For the first time ever, the Elyria Police Department has assigned two officers to focus full-time on dangerous driving, after being inundated with complaints from concerned residents, parents, and school bus drivers..
In the first two weeks of the new plan, the Elyria police have set a record in department history. The two officers have written 265 tickets in 14 days.
Lt. James Welsh said residents are thanking them, especially parents who worry about their kids’ playing outside.
Welsh said the special unit is happening at an important time when many more kids will be playing outside when school breaks for summer.
Some drivers have been cited for driver a shocking 40 miles per hour over the speed limit in school zones which means they were going 60 miles per hour in a 20-mile-per-hour zone during school hours.
Going double the speed limit, lower in some cases isn’t just a ticket you can pay by mail; it’s a crime classified as a misdemeanor.
That means it’s mandatory to appear in court in front of a magistrate or a judge, which could result in double the normal fine into hundreds of dollars.
The safety measure is designed to protect citizens.
Police have also gotten complaints from more people than they can ever remember running red lights.
Welsh said this new approach of having two officers focusing full time on dangerous drivers is not about creating revenue. It’s about responding to a record number of complaints of speeding, and running stop lights he said.
“Of course, if there’s an emergency call and the two officers are nearby, they will immediately respond to those calls,” Welsh said.