Despite the University of Miami Police Department’s (UMPD) efforts to enforce the Coral Gables campus’ lowered speed limit, some student drivers continue to speed.
UMPD implemented the new 15-mph speed limit for all on-campus roads as part of a pedestrian safety initiative called ‘Canes Crossroad.
The speed limit was reduced from last year’s 30-mph limit. Signs have been placed throughout campus, notifying drivers about the reduction.
Despite these notifications, students like senior Nelson Alemany were unaware that a change in the speed limit had been made.
“I assumed it was like 20 or 30 mph,” Alemany said. “I don’t think I respect the speed limit, unless there are people and their safety is in jeopardy.”
Officers have been adamant about stopping anyone from exceeding the new limit.
“When you do any kind of traffic control change, there is always a focus on education,” said Michael Colombo, a field operations lieutenant with UMPD. “We give out a lot more warnings than we do tickets.”
UMPD uses radar to track down speeders, especially on roads such as Dickinson Drive, where there is a significant speeding issue, Colombo said.
When drivers are stopped, officers usually try to persuade first-time offenders to follow the speed limit through reason or traffic school rather than a fine.
While the new speed limit is supposed to make the campus safer, some students choose to express their dissent by simply not following it.
“I dislike the fact that they have reduced the speed limit because now I am even more pressed for time, being that I am a commuter student,” junior Kamrel Eppinger said. “I only reduce my speed where there are cops around.”
Alemany said the speed limit won’t make a difference in his driving.
“I feel like I drive safely, even if it’s a little bit over the speed limit,” he said. “I probably won’t reduce it now that I know about it.”
Others haven’t noticed any UMPD enforcement at all.
“I haven’t seen anyone pulled over, so either everyone’s following it or no one’s getting pulled over,” junior Anna Makrianis said.
Drivers also express concerns about pedestrians and their role in traffic law. They believe they should adhere to similar restraints.
“I think that some students are just dumb and don’t use the sidewalk,” junior Bibi Yasmin Moghani said. “They don’t understand that you can’t walk on the street and they just do.”
Many drivers feel that jaywalking is an issue that should be addressed just as the speed limit has been.
“I think a lot of pedestrians don’t respect many traffic laws,” Alemany said “They end up jaywalking, and I think a lot of accidents are caused by that.”