Parma Modifies Photo Enforcement To Keep Students Safe In School Zones
Parma City Schools returned to a five-day, in-person schedule as private schools are continuing their full schedules. With all students back to full days, their safety remains a top priority. The City of Parma has operated a school zone photo enforcement program since 2009. With students’ full return to classes, photo enforcement will resume in six city school zones. The zones have cameras mounted on poles about 12 feet above ground level that record vehicles traveling both directions. The cameras are for speed enforcement in the 20 mph posted school zones only. Photo enforcement tickets will be issued during designated times when schools are in session and school zone lights are flashing.
According to Ohio law, the ticket is a civil violation, resulting in a fine and court costs but no points against a driver’s record. In comparison, a traffic ticket may result in a fine, court costs and points.
A driver speeding in a school zone will receive a Notice of Liability letter in the mail from Parma’s Automated School Zone Speed Enforcement program. The letter will explain the violation and three options available to address the violation: pay the ticket, contest the ticket or provide the driver’s identity if the recipient of the letter was not the driver at the time of the violation.
The fines levied for speeding in school zones are $100 plus court costs of $20 for driving 28 mph to 29 mph, and $200 plus court costs of $20 for driving 30 mph or faster.
If a driver enters a school zone right before the designated time that lights are scheduled to flash but exits when the lights turn on, the photo enforcement program allows for that lag time, and a violation will not be issued.
“Children’s safety must be a critical priority for all our residents. We are grateful to the City of Parma for recognizing this importance and taking proactive steps to ensure our students can travel to and from school without incident,” said Parma City School District Superintendent Charles Smialek.
Over the past few weeks, warnings have been given to drivers speeding through the posted 20 mph school zones to get them reacquainted with slowing down before entering these zones.
“It is easier to suddenly stop a moving vehicle at 20 mph than at greater speeds. It takes the average driver 1.5 seconds to react to a situation,” said Police Lt. Dean Leon, adding that every mile per hour equals 1.46 feet traveled per second. At 28 miles per hour, a driver travels 41 feet per second. “The program’s goal is to make long-term changes in drivers’ behavior that reduces accidents in our school zones.”
Signs are posted within 300 feet of school zones with photo enforcement equipment, stating: “Traffic Laws Photo Enforced.” There are also three other indicators:
1. Flashing signs to catch drivers’ attention before entering an active school zone
2. Warning signs before school zones and at the end
3. Painted markings on the pavement warning drivers entering a school zone
Six school zones and times of speed enforcement
3400 block of Snow Road (east and west)
7:45 a.m. – 9 a.m.
3 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Thoreau Park Elementary
5400 block of West 54th Street (north and south)
8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
11:15 a.m. – 1:35 p.m.
3:15 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Bethany Lutheran School
6000 block of Ridge Road (north and south)
8 a.m. – 9:15 a.m.
2:50 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Normandy High School and Green Valley Elementary
2500 block of West Pleasant Valley Road (east and west)
7 a.m. to 8 a.m.
8:45 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
1:25 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Padua High School and St. Anthony Elementary School
6700 block of State Road (north and south)
7:30 a.m. – 8:15 a.m.
2:15 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Holy Family School
7400 block of York Road (north and south)
7:10 a.m. – 8:10 a.m.
2:15 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Lt. Daniel Ciryak
Parma Police Department