School safety camera program
The school safety camera program in East Providence is a money grab. Consider this: current school zone hours at East Providence High School are 7:30 AM to 8:30 AM and 1:30 PM to 3:30 PM, which reflect drop-off and pick-up times. Soon these hours will be extended to 7:00 AM through 4:00 PM. Why reduce traffic to a crawl on a main road like Pawtucket Avenue from 8:30 AM to 1:30 PM when students are (or should be) safely in school?
Cameras will also be set up on Pawtucket Avenue at St. Margaret's School. This may encourage drivers to use secondary neighborhood roads as alternate routes, making them more dangerous for residents.
For an example of how a safety school zone can work effectively, look at the Aitken Elementary School on Newman Avenue in Seekonk. Signal lights on both sides of Newman Avenue flash "20" as the speed limit during morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up times, and cars slow down in the zone. When the drop-offs and pick-ups are through though, the flashing lights are turned off and drivers can resume normal speed on Newman.
We need to protect students from speeders in school zones; but it's hard to understand how extending school zone hours does that once the students are safely in school.
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