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News Release: Police out in force for first day of school

Posted by on September 2nd, 2008 at 8:55 am

This just in from the Portland Police Bureau:


Starting Tuesday, September 2, 2008, and continuing every weekday for the next two weeks, officers from all five precincts, the Traffic Division, the Transit Police Division, and School Resource officers will participate in a citywide school safety mission. Among the goals of the mission is to provide a positive and safe environment for our children to travel to and from school and to provide a positive and safe environment for learning.

During the mission, officers will place special emphasis on enforcing traffic laws in school zones, bus zones, and crosswalks. Officers will also enforce laws regarding parking in and around school zones. Officers will conduct the patrols during the morning commute,
7:00 a.m.-9:30 a.m., during lunch around Portland’s high schools, 11:00a.m.-12:30 p.m., and during the afternoon commute, 1:30 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

School Resource officers will resume regular patrols of David Douglas and Parkrose Schools on Tuesday, September 2, 2008 and Portland Public Schools on Wednesday, September 3, 2008. Motorists are asked to remember that the speed limit in schools zones is 20 mph on school days from 7:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. or anytime school zones lights are flashing. Fines for speeding in a school zone could be as high as $206.00 for as little as eleven miles over the posted speed. Drivers are strongly encouraged to slow down and watch out for our younger citizens.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • Me2 September 3, 2008 at 8:29 am

    I saw a story about this on KGW last night. My favorite part was how they mentioned several times that tickets are $206, but the cops won\’t issue one to anyone motorist unless they clock himher at 31 mph or more.

    I know the cops do it so they can make sure the ticket holds up in court, but it kind of defeats the purpose when on the other hand you say the law is 20 mph, but on the other hand there won\’t be any consequences unless your driving over 31 mph.

    It\’s kind of like announcing a traffic safety enforcement sting and then saying the PoPo won\’t ticket cyclists who roll through stop signs as long as they make sure to look both ways as before proceeding through the intersection.

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  • El Biciclero September 3, 2008 at 9:55 am

    I think the \”over-the-limit cushion\” should be percentage-based. Going 31 in a 20 is 55% over the limit. Going 80 in a 65 is only 23% over. If we apply, say, a 25%-over limit everywhere, then the ticketable speed in a school zone would be 25 mph, and on a 65-mph highway would be 81 mph.

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  • matt picio September 3, 2008 at 3:52 pm

    I think that\’s a stupendously bad idea. 81 mph in a 65 is very dangerous – less reaction time, higher lethality rate, higher incidence of mechanical failure, more fuel burned (hence, more emissions), etc. People assume 5mph over is safe, and that 10 over will get them a ticket (since speedometers can be 2 or 3mph inaccurate) – once they start thinking that 10-15 mph is ok on 55/65mph roads, you make it a LOT more dangerous for rural and touring cyclists, in addition to an even less pleasant cycling environment.

    This is especially problematic for cyclists traveling to the coast, where there is no route that doesn\’t put you on a 55-mph road at some point.

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  • El Biciclero September 3, 2008 at 5:06 pm

    I was only judging by the 15-over cutoff that has been cited to me by cops on the occasions I have been pulled over (I know, shame! I chalk it up to youthful indiscretion…), but I agree, 81 is too fast on the highway. I also think that 31 is way too fast in a school zone and was throwing out a heuristic that would bring some consistency to the cutoff point, while recognizing that there is greater danger when speeding in residential/business/school zones. Maybe it should be more like 5 mph or 15% over the limit, whichever is greater. That would still make the school zone cutoff 25 mph, but the freeway cutoff would be more like 75. Or better yet, just make it 5 mph over in all cases.

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