The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department and Missouri Department of Transportation have declared a “Travel Safe Zone” on Natural Bridge Avenue between Parnell Street and Goodfellow Boulevard. Under Missouri law, this allows for the court to double the fine of any person that pleads guilty or is found guilty of a speeding violation in this zone during all hours of the day and night.

This decisions was spurred by a rash of fatalities on the road. The Natural Bridge corridor has had 18 fatal crashes with 20 people killed since 2012, according to St. Louis police. Of those fatal crashes, 13 involved pedestrians. Overall, between 2012 and 2016, there were a total of 1469 crashes on the Natural Bridge Corridor, which is three times the number of expected accidents.

Additionally, between the hours of midnight and 6:00 a.m., drivers are often driving 60-plus mph, which is excessively higher than the posted speed limit of 35 mph, police said.

During the start of the “Travel Safe Zone” enforcement efforts, officers will be allowed to use their discretion as whether to warn the violator of their speeding violation or issue a ticket for speeding.

Police said a regional “Travel Safe Zone” team, comprised of engineering, law enforcement and public information individuals, will conduct periodic monitoring to determine the timeframe for ending this initiative before moving it to other areas of the city that are also a traffic safety concern.

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