The New York Department of Transportation recently conducted a study of driving habits in and around the 44 public schools in Brooklyn. Unfortunately, the news was all bad when it came to whether or not drivers respected posted speed limit signs, regardless of whether or not school children were present.

In one case, every driver who passed through a specific school zone in Brooklyn was speeding. In every case there were a high number of drivers who not only ignored posted reduced speed limit signs in school zones, they were actually speeding at a faster rate than if they were simply on a normal stretch of road.

This is bad news for public safety advocates and bad news for students who attend these schools and must walk home when the school day ends.

School zones have reduced posted speed limits because children are likely to be walking in the area. As anyone who has ever known a child already knows, their behavior can be quite unpredictable. They might walk on the sidewalk, or they might step off the sidewalk unexpectedly. They might walk in groups, pushing and shoving each other, possibly into the path of oncoming traffic; and despite the fact they’ve been taught to look before crossing the street they won’t hesitate to rush toward a waiting friend, right across a busy road.

New York DOT officials say that nearly every traffic fatality recorded in the city of New York is related to a speeding vehicle. This renewed focus on speeding means police will likely be out in force to catch those drivers and remind them (with a citation, of course) that speeding vehicles cause crashes, and vehicle crashes cause deaths. Especially when young people and pedestrians are present.