Speeding drivers endangering children outside Cape Coral Elementary School

Reporter: Kellie Miller Writer: Matthew Seaver
Published: Updated:

A Cape Coral woman is fired up over speeders near a local elementary school. She doesn’t feel that officers are doing enough to protect the children.

Clarice Campbell wants Cape Coral police to come to Cape Coral Elementary School and catch speeders before something terrible happens.

Cape Coral Elementary School sign. (Credit: WINK News)

Speeding, reckless, and distracted drivers are all concerning for many of us, especially when our kids walk to and from school.

“I’m concerned about the kids’ safety. People will be doing 40, 50, 60 miles an hour down this road, and it’s a 20-mile-an-hour speed zone,” said Campbell.

Campbell emailed WINK News in early November about speeding drivers around Cape Elementary. She told us about when she first noticed the danger.

“For me, as soon as my granddaughter started kindergarten, and now she’s in 4th grade,” said Campbell.

Campbell lives across the street from the school with her two granddaughters. The girls walk to and from school daily, which is often a stressful experience.

“There’s been several times that I have walked them across the crosswalk and literally had to stop cars because they weren’t paying attention to the crossing guard,” Campbell said.

Cape Coral Elementary School crossing guard. (Credit: WINK News)

The school’s crossing guard confirmed Campbell’s worries. She said not a day goes by that she doesn’t spot speeders.

WINK News decided to see how many people sped past the school. Within minutes, we captured four cars speeding through the school zone.

One going about 35, two at least 40, and one driver going over 50 miles per hour.

WINK News measuring the speed of drivers in front of Cape Coral Elementary School.

“It’s a dangerous situation,” said Campbell.

Campbell said she had brought her concerns to the Cape Coral Police Department in the past but didn’t feel like enough was done.

“I have called the police department a couple times. This year I have not. In the past, I have. They have brought officers out, but I have only seen them write tickets one time,” said Campbell.

WINK News contacted the Cape Coral police records division to get data on speeding tickets in the school zone.

Between January and October 2022, only one ticket was issued in the school zone during school hours.

So, what does Campbell think should be done to protect the kids? “I think part of the solution will be more police presence and actually physically writing tickets, issuing citations and setting that example and letting people know that it is not going to be tolerated.”

WINK News took that message right to the Cape Coral Police Department. Public Information Officer Brandon Sancho said they plan to take action and hopefully control the problem for good.

“It’s extremely dangerous. Anywhere in Cape Coral, you shouldn’t be speeding, and you should be abiding by our traffic laws,” said Sancho.

For now, Sancho said officers would increase their presence in the area.

“What we are going to be looking for is speeding, people violating the right of way of people crossing, anything you can possibly think of, just to show our presence and enforce the traffic laws,” Sancho said.

Campbell said she hopes people take responsibility for their actions and consider the consequences.

“It matters to me because it’s the safety of our children. Not just my grandchildren but everybody’s children. They are all at risk trying to cross the street,” said Campbell.

The school zone hours are 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. The consequences of speeding in a school zone are pricey.

Speeding drivers face fines of $50 for one to nine miles per hour over the speed limit, $200 for 10-14 miles per hour over the speed limit, $300 for 15-19 miles per hour over the speed limit, and $350 for 20-29 miles over the speed limit.

The penalties get larger and larger, but the most significant consequence could be a person’s life.

Cape Coral police officers encourage everyone to be smart and slow down.

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