Police Officers Enforcing School Zone Speed Limits - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Police Officers Enforcing School Zone Speed Limits

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KENNEWICK, Wash-- As schools gear up for the start of the new year, police officers are asking drivers to respect the speed limit, just in case a young student runs in front of your car.

The speed limit in a school zone is 20 miles per hour, and there is good reason it is so low.  Studies show it takes the average car 17 feet to stop when travelling 20 miles per hour.  Just five miles per hour faster, at 25, it takes the average car 27 feet to stop.  And travelling 30 miles per hour, it takes close to 40 feet to stop.

All available Traffic Officers and Patrol Officers will monitor school zones for the first three weeks of the school year to ensure the safety of the students.

Every elementary and middle school in the area have signs posted warning drivers they are in a school zone.  They appear 300 feet before a school crosswalk.  High schools, however, typically do not have a school zone speed limit because the students are old enough to cross the street safely.