Summer’s winding down and that means the school year is starting.
The Illinois State Police along with county and city police want to remind drivers to be alert in school zones.
The start of the school year is here which means morning and afternoon traffic will be more congested.
That’s why the Illinois State Police is conducting a school zone safety detail during most of August.
Trooper Joshua Haile says most of the violations they see in school zones are speeding and distracted driving.
“The main thing with the announcement of this detail and seeing our troopers is not to go out and have a goal of writing an exuberant amount of citations of these violations, our goal is zero incidents, but also voluntary compliance of the drivers.”
If you are cited for a violation in a school zone the penalties are increased.
“Speeding in a school zone the first offense is up to $150 and second offense is $300, so it actually ramps up fairly quickly.”
Benton High School Superintendent Aaron Mattox says drivers need to use caution all day around the high school because they have students coming and going at all times.
“We’re in the middle of town here obviously there’s a lot of traffic, so it’s extremely important you know from the beginning of the school year to get in those habits.”
There’s a 20MPH speed limit in school zones from 7am to 4pm.