School zone blitz disappoints cops
IT’S a shocking tally which has numbed road safety officials and police in Coffs Harbour.
As many as 68 drivers have been fined for breaking traffic laws in school zones during a city council blitz.
In response to complaints from parents and bus companies, council rangers conducted the two-week parking checks blitz in school zones across the city.
"The figures are really disappointing," said Anne Shearer, the council’s road safety and transport officer.
"School zones are subject to tight regulation regarding stopping and parking for very good reasons.
"The laws are there to protect children. The danger is that children will suddenly dart out from between parked or stopped vehicles into the path of oncoming traffic.
"That is why school zone areas - the main pick-up and drop-off points for school students - must be kept clear."
Ms Shearer said the figures suggested the problem was far worse and more widespread than anticipated and the council was considering a follow-up blitz early next year, along with random patrols.
The fines handed out during the blitz ranged from $258 up to $344. All carried two licence demerit points.
There are a wide range of penalties for disobeying signs in school zones.
Fines and demerit points include:
- disobeying a no stopping sign in a school zone - $258 plus two points;
- disobeying a no parking sign in a school zone - $143 plus two points;
- stopping on or near a children’s crossing in a school zone - $344 plus two points;
- double parking in a school zone - $258 plus two points;
- stopping at or near a bus stop in a school zone - $258 plus two points; and
- stopping on a path or median strip in a built-up area - $143 plus two points.