Speed-detection signs going up on busy Danville roads
By The News-Gazette
Monday, November 12, 2007 7:32 AM CDT

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DANVILLE – Drivers may notice their speeds flashing at them as they drive along city streets. It's all part of a new measure by the Danville Police Department to keep drivers safe this holiday season.

Public Safety Director Larry Thomason said the department is setting up its portable speed-detection sign on busier roads such as Bowman Avenue, Gilbert Street, Vermilion Street and Martin Luther King Drive.

"We know speed is a major factor in most vehicular accidents," Thomason said, noting that the distance a car travels during a motorist's reaction time depends on how fast the car is going.

In 2004, there were 589 fatalities from speed-related crashes in the state, according to the police department.

Thomason said the speed detectors, much like the ones posted at road construction sites on interstates, are meant to remind motorists to check their speeds and slow down.

The detectors will also record speeds and report average speeds on a road, Thomason said. The information can be used, in turn, to tell police where they should have the next speed enforcement program, he said.

Thomason said the detectors are being used in conjunction with an ongoing speed enforcement program. The program started in October and is paid for through a $25,000 state grant.

Police will be watching for speeders along Fairchild, Gilbert, Seminary and Vermilion streets as part of over-time details scheduled through next year.

Motorists should not assume the portable speed detector is the only monitoring system in an area – a police unit may be nearby as well, Thomason said..

"What we're hoping for is compliance simply by gaining their attention, seeing their speed, checking their speedometer and reducing accordingly. We're looking to make the holidays in particular more safe," he said.