Police enforcing school speed zones

  • Thursday, August 22, 2013

Moncks Corner Police Department Officer Shane Judy uses a radar gun to check the speeds of motorists passing through the school zone near St. John’s Christian Academy on Main Street. STEFAN ROGENMOSER/INDEPENDENT

Officer Shane Judy and the entire Moncks Corner Police Department will be enforcing school speed zones as students start classes this week at the Berkeley County School District.
The speed limit is 25 mph when the yellow lights flash in the approximate half hour before and after school starts and ends each day.
There are five schools in MCPD’s jurisdiction. Those are Berkeley High School (406 W. Main St.), Berkeley Middle School (230 N. Live Oak Dr.), Berkeley Intermediate (777 Stony Landing Drive) and St. John’s Christian Academy (204 W. Main St.).
“A lot of people don’t understand the school zone for St. John’s and Berkeley High School,” MCPD Sgt. Brad Norvell said, adding that it goes from the Scotchman gas station at Broughton Road all the way past BHS. “A lot of people don’t realize it’s still in effect until you pass the high school.”
Each year MCPD issues about 250 to 300 citations in school zones, Norvell said.
“Generally the school utilizes the lights about 30 minutes before school starts,” he said. “Speed zone times are approximate. You need to go by the flashing lights.
“We regulate all the schools but the middle school is regulated significantly because it’s a four-lane highway (U.S.-17A).
”The first couple of days of school people are still trying to get the hang of things. People need to be patient. Usually a couple of days after school has started traffic has ironed out and things are easier.”
Motorists need to keep in mind that just because there are low speeds, children are still at risk, he added.
“About three years ago a child was hit by a car at the middle school. He was not seriously injured. But kids can get hit.”
Meanwhile the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office is doing the same for the schools in its jurisdiction. According to BCSO Public Information Officer Dan Moon, the agency is positioning additional deputies at schools to help with the congestion of traffic that occurs during the first day of school (Monday, Aug. 19).
Sheriff Wayne DeWitt realizes that the overwhelming frustration of congested traffic occurs from first day attendees, student drivers and parents dropping their kids off, according to the BCSO release.
Deputies will be out in full force to help create a smooth and safe transition for all returning to school by enforcing traffic laws and issuing citations to those who fail to adhere to the rules in the school zones.
The public is advised to use caution and reduce speed while approaching school zones. BCSO advises to pay particular attention to stopped school buses and children walking to and from school.
On Monday deputies monitored traffic flow and assisted with other needs of students, parents and administrators at Cross Elementary, Cross High, Whitesville Elementary, Sedgefield Elementary, Sangaree Elementary, Berkeley Elementary, Macedonia Middle, H.E. Bonner Elementary and College Park Elementary.

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