NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. (WFLA) — A New Port Richey mother is desperate to get speeders in her neighborhood to slow down, so she contacted WFLA Traffic Reporter Leslee Lacey who brought out her speed buster gun.
Kim Fanning is a mother of three who lives along busy Mitchell Ranch Road between Seven Springs Blvd and SR 54. Fanning’s home is mere blocks from Seven Springs Elementary School. She says walking her kids to school is a bit nerve-wracking. “It’s a little scary. I get tense.”
So tense, that Fanning contacted the County and created a neighborhood “Slow Down” event on Facebook. 15 people showed up and held signs in support of hitting the brakes. Even the popular crossing guard Sharen Holihan has had a close call. “It was close. It (the vehicle) came right past my sign, right underneath my arm.”
“It scares me for my kids,” says Fanning. “As you can see my son is trying to protect my daughter from running into the street. And I contacted you because I’m afraid somebody is going to get hurt.”
Kim’s son, Sam Fanning, told Leslee he has to protect his little sister from the speeding cars. “Because I don’t want my sister to get hit. Because I love her.”
The speed limit on Mitchell Ranch Road is 30 mph.
Leslee began speed busting while talking with Kim, and clocked a vehicle going 51 mph around the busy curve near Fanning’s home. She clocked several vehicles traveling over 40 mph including one at 49 mph.
Fanning had contacted the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office to let them know that Speed Busters was coming out and deputies were patrolling when Leslee arrived.
Leslee witnessed Pasco deputies busting speeders just minutes before the school zone was in effect. Leslee clocked a vehicle deputies pulled over at going 40 mph. The Pasco deputy confirmed that 40 mph was the speed of that driver.
Fanning was glad to see deputies patrolling and busting speeders on her busy street. But, she worries that as soon as the deputies leave, the speeding will continue. “I would love to see more of a presence. I want people to fear coming down our street, the fear of slowing down or they are going to get a ticket, honestly.”
Leslee expressed Fanning’s concerns to Pasco County Public Information Officer Doug Tobin. Tobin told Leslee he will conduct a traffic study on Mitchell Ranch Rd, per Fanning’s request. And of course Leslee will be following up on the results.
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