After asking nicely, UCF police begin ticketing speeding drivers

Patrols catch driver doing 63 mph in 30 mph zone on campus, officials say

By Erik von Ancken - Anchor/Reporter

ORLANDO, Fla. - Fall classes started Monday at the University of Central Florida, and police are now using traffic tickets to protect students.

Several months ago, police posted on social media, warning drivers to slow down and stop for students in crosswalks.

UCF Police Chief Carl Metzger had flashing lights installed at crosswalks in an effort to make distracted drivers pay attention to pedestrians.

[RELATED: UCF police open substation ahead of classes at new downtown campusHow is your Florida student's college keeping them safe on campus?]

UCF even posted a video on Facebook showing two pedestrians almost hit in crosswalks by drivers who didn't stop.

But that didn't work.

Drivers continued to speed on campus and ignore crosswalks, so police stepped up enforcement and began handing out numerous warnings to drivers.

That didn't work either.

At the end of last month, UCF police had two officers per day spend part of their shifts solely doing traffic enforcement and handing out tickets to drivers if necessary.

During the special enforcement period that took place over the course of nearly a month, police pulled over 114 drivers for speeding.

One driver was caught doing 63 mph on campus in a 30 mph zone, officials said.

Some drivers use the campus as a cut-through from Alafaya Trail to State Road 408. 

Officer Ricardo Lopez said some drivers should know better.

"Absolutely, especially the students, faculty, staff members. They drive on campus every day," Lopez said. "They should know."

Lopez pulled over a delivery driver for Jimmy Johns, which has a store location on campus. Lopez said he clocked the delivery driver doing 44 mph in a 25 mph zone.

"Jimmy Johns -- they say their delivery is very fast, and she had to call her boss to say she was pulled over for speeding," Lopez said. 

[MORE: Parent of a new UCF student? You'll want to live by this guide]

Ironically, several of the students pulled over said that speeding is a problem on campus.

"I've seen cases where I've pulled (over) the same driver three times," Lopez said. 

Orange County deputies stepped up enforcement off campus earlier this year after a third UCF student was killed in the past four years crossing the busy roads that surround the campus.

The roads off campus fall under the Orange County Sheriff's Office jurisdiction.

Copyright 2019 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.