School zone violations show speeding is a popular offense

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - With thousands of kids across Southern Arizona back in school many more people are driving in school zones.

Local law enforcement says a decent number of those drivers are breaking the law though.

Tucson News Now reached out to the Pima County Sheriff's Department to see just how many tickets they'd given out during their patrols of school zones from August 6 through August 16, and the numbers show that the most common offense people are cited for is speeding.

Driver speeding is a concern for TUSD crossing guard N.L. Wilson. He says he wants more help to protect him and the students he assists in crossing the street to school.

"They don't pay attention to the kids crossing. So we mostly looking out after the kids and we don't have no law enforcement up here to help us out," Wilson says.

Sheriff's deputies say they've given 37 citations for drivers going above the 15 mph school speed limit from August 6 to August 16.

Following speeding citations, the most common citation by PCSD is for people standing or parking in areas prohibited by a sign. For that they've given out eight citations.

Some good news for pedestrians in school zones, the sheriff's department says they've only issued one citation for a driver that failed to stop for a pedestrian in a school zone during that August 6 to August 16 time frame.

Tucson Police Department on the other hand has given out far more citations for drivers in school zones.

Numbers they shared with Tucson News Now, showing the violations their officers have issued in school zones from August 2 to August 15, point to Steele Elementary's school zone as having the most violations. Their school zone has had 39 issued so far, according to TPD, and there have been 30 stops by TPD officers.

In response to the number of citations TPD has issued in that time frame within Steele Elementary's school zone, Tucson Unified School District told Tucson News Now, "TPD usually chooses were they want to enforce school zones. TUSD School Safety makes requests to them to be present at schools where a Crossing Guard or other staff does a report a high number of suspected speeders but to our knowledge, no request was made from Steele this year."

Behind Steele Elementary is Senita Valley Elementary and Rincon Vista Middle School with 16 stops and 19 violations. Then, there's Desert Sky Middle with 21 violations and 14 stops. After that the numbers start to trickle down to single digits and the school zone with the least violations and stops is Amphi High School with only one of each.

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