Aug 27, 2014 1:36 AM by Kristi Tedesco & Edgar Ybarra
Tucson - We're just weeks into the new school year and there are already some big problems in one public school zone. Kids and parents are in danger and you might be surprised to see who's behind the wheel!
It all started with a photograph that was taken by TUSD governing board member, Cam Juarez. Juarez tells Kristi's Kdis, a driver sped right past him in front of Carrillo Elementary school, near downtown.
During our investigation, Carrillo parents told us the school zone is notorious.
Ruben Guzman, a Carrillo Elementary parent said, "it makes me angry because of the kids... they can get hit by one of these vehicles,"
Carrillo K-5 Magnet, located on South Main Avenue has a chronic problem with speeders.
Juarez said, there is no excuse. "This school has been here for over one hundred years, and you can't tell me that you don't know that the school is here or that the school zone's here," Juarez said.
Kristi's Kids decided to investigate the problems near Carrillo Elementary. We took a radar gun to the school zone, prior to classes letting out. In a 30-minute window, we clocked drivers both entering and leaving the 15-mile per hour school zone. The zone is clearly marked with signs on both sides of the crosswalk.
During our investigation, the speeds varied. Some drivers went extra slow - 10 mph. Other drivers were right on the money - at 15 mph.
Then, there were those drivers who entered the school zone going too fast. One driver went through at 26 mph.
What we weren't expecting to see, were Sun Tran busses also speeding in and out of the marked school zone. That was the case with some, but not all of the drivers we clocked during our Kristi's Kids investigation.
We also spotted a Tucson Fire Department vehicle going 28 mph, just moments before entering the marked school zone.
Carrillo Elementary parent, Ruben Guzman also witnesses speeders near the school. "Well I see a lot of cars going by fast even city workers, have no respect for the kids, I guess," Guzman said.
Guzman's son, Marcos, a Carrillo Elementary student tells Kristi's Kids, he doesn't feel safe with all the speeders "because you could get hit by them."
Two days after talking to Marco, we took our footage to SunTran. We asked spokesperson Kandi Young if she was surprised to see drivers traveling at speeds in the 20 mph range and above. "Yes, yeah that's not ideal obviously," Young said.
Kristi's Kids asked Young if there could there be any reasoning behind the high speeds. "No, there's non excuse, you know we need to obey the rules as everybody does," Young said.
Young is working to identify the drivers and will handle it internally. Also, all SunTran employees will be reminded to obey speed limits, both in and around all school zones.
Tucson Fire sent this statement to Kristi's Kids. It reads, in full: "The Tucson Fire Department fully supports adhering to the speed limits, as the safety of our citizens, especially our children is paramount. After previewing the video provided by KVOA it is clear that one of our employees is traveling at a speed that exceeds the posted limit when entering the school zone. We are attempting to identify the individual in the video so we can take corrective action. Regardless, the department intends to put out a department wide communication reminding all employees to follow posted speed limits and to take extra care when driving near a school specifically within a school zone. Thank you for bringing this to our attention."
In addition to speeding, Juarez tells Kristi's Kids that jaywalking in front of the school is a big problem. And Dora Alicia Lopez, the school crossing guard said, "...people need to respect stop signs and crosswalk..."
Yvonne Moreno, a Carrillo parent tells Kristi's Kids "I've almost been hit by a car in the crosswalk." "Slow down, these are kids trying to get to school..." Moreno said.
Sun Tran wants to hear from you on how their drivers are doing. You can call the customer service line at (520) 792-9222