Police in Essex, Massachusetts, are trying a new approach to stop drivers from speeding through crosswalks in an effort to keep pedestrians safe.
Last week, Police Chief Peter Silva said the department posted an undercover officer at several busy intersections.
"As if he were a pedestrian — have him walk across the crosswalk and we have a cruiser that’s close by watching the incident — and if they fail to yield to the pedestrian, they are stopping the vehicle," Silva explained.
Seventeen drivers were stopped, getting either a verbal warning or a $200 ticket.
"When you talk about the potential of possibly injuring or maiming someone in a crosswalk, we definitely don’t want that," said Silva.
Some residents are welcoming the new effort by police to crackdown on the speeding.
"In the summer, Essex gets very busy and the crosswalk is a hazard at best," said Sara Hammond who lives nearby. "One car stops and you think you have the set to go and then another car comes flying around."
Police are paying for the new program with a $2,000 state grant. They say they will continue the crosswalk program and other enforcement efforts to keep pedestrians safe.