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1,500 students walk for new speed hump

Each morning and afternoon students from PS/MS 280 and MS 80 fight traffic to cross the heavily traveled Mosholu Parkway - a dangerous scenario for 1,500 kids daily.

Soon, parents, teachers and students will receive some relief from the instillation of a speed hump on E. Mosholu Parkway, between Van Cortlandt and Steuben avenues.

“They’re very grateful it’s being done,” Fernando P. Tirado, district manager of Community Board 7, said about the neighborhood’s response to the much needed safety measure.

The schools requested the speed hump after witnessing several dangerous traffic situations on Mosholu, which is located adjacent to the building’s main entrance/exit.

“Unfortunately, many students become distracted while exiting with such a large group and do not use the same precautions that they may use at another time or location,” PS/MS principal James Weeks said.

Weeks explained that such distractions have led to several students nearly being struck by oncoming traffic, with vehicles often hitting each other to avoid them.

“While many motorists may not have the common courtesy to slow down when they see large groups of young children, they do seem to care about their cars enough to slow down when they see large speed bumps in front of them,” Weeks said.

According to the Department of Transportation, a speed hump will be installed at the selected location in the next couple of weeks.

Having first discussed the matter at a school leadership team meeting, Weeks said the group soon gained support from Councilman G. Oliver Koppel and CB 7.

Upon reviewing the street’s traffic patterns, taking into account the close proximity of the school, the DOT approved the safety measure.

Thrilled by the DOT’s decision, Tirado said members of CB 7 are excited about the judgment. “They felt like it was always a hazard to the kids,” he said.

While the hump is expected to dramatically slow traffic on Mosholu, Weeks still urges drivers to pay attention.

“Streets that are crowded with students, narrowed and blinded by many parked cars are not the place to speed and drive recklessly,” he commented.

Always looking out for the kids, Weeks gave one last request to area motorists.

“You may feel if you go fast enough kids will have no choice but to get out of the way, but if just one student doesn’t see you in time, it’s something you’d have to live with,” he warned. “So for the benefit of our young children as well as your own, slow down.”

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