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Forest Hills Police Plan Grace Period on 25 MPH Speed Limit Enforcement

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | October 28, 2014 3:03pm
 The new 25 mph speed limit will take effect on Nov. 7.
The new 25 mph speed limit will take effect on Nov. 7.
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DNAinfo/Rachel Holliday Smith

QUEENS — The Forest Hills police precinct is planning to allow a grace period during which police officers will not ticket drivers under the new 25 mph speed limit educating them instead, police officials said.

The new speed limit, which reduces the current 30 mph limit for the first time in 50 years, was signed into law on Monday and will take effect on Nov. 7, as part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Vision Zero plan to reduce traffic fatalities in New York.

But for about a week after the law goes into effect, officers from the 112th Precinct will "educate" people caught breaking the speed limit rather than ticketing them right away, said Capt. Judith Harrison, Commanding Officer of the 112th Precinct.

“During that educational phase we’ll stop you, we’ll talk to you, maybe we’ll give you a flier, maybe we’ll give you a lecture, maybe we’ll try to explain to you why this is happening,” Harrison said at a precinct community council meeting Monday night. “I don’t want to just start slamming people with summonses. We really want to inform people first.”

After the grace period ends, “we’ll be enforcing it in full force,” Harrison said, referring to the new law.

Chief Thomas Chan, who heads up the NYPD's Transporation Bureau, also said that drivers won't necessarily be penalized during the rollout of the new regulation.

Harrison also noted that the lower speed limit significantly increases the chances that a pedestrian will survive a crash.

“I don’t want any fatalities here,” she said.