At the beginning of the school year, the Greensboro Police Department implemented Operation School Watch to promote traffic safety in school zones through increased police presence and enforcement.
Operation School Watch ran from Monday, Aug. 28 through Friday, Sept. 8. Police devoted nearly 58 hours of staff time to the program and have filed a report on the results.
The program concentrated on speeding in school zones, seatbelt usage, pedestrian school cross-walk violations, school bus stop arm violations and other traffic violations in and around school zones.
Officers used both marked and unmarked cars during the program, and electronic message boards were used beginning on Monday, Aug. 14, warning motorists of the school zones and the penalties for speeding in school zones.
Some good news is that despite the fact that officers followed school bus routes to look for motorists who failed to stop for stopped school buses displaying their red lights and stop arms, not a single ticket was issued for a school bus stop arm violation.
While it appears that area motorists are obeying the law regarding stopped school buses, the same cannot be said for speeding in school zones.
Greensboro police officers issued 79 tickets for speeding in school zone violations.
Officers also concentrated on observing the driving habits of students as they were driving to and from school, and 19 warnings were issued during the program, no doubt to drivers who were extremely thankful they didn’t receive a citation.
Overall the record of Greensboro drivers looks pretty good. There was one ticket issued for a driver’s license violation, one for a seatbelt violation and one for a traffic control device violation. However, no tickets were issued for child restraint violations or safe movement violations, and there were no criminal arrests as a result of the Operation School Watch program.
The GPD also reported that there were no serious crashes or injuries related to school transportation during the program.