In a recent traffic analysis the Public Works Department completed along 4th Avenue East, traffic within the school zone at Hedges Elementary was noted as exceeding the posted school zone speed limit. Roughly 85% of vehicles were measured by traffic collection equipment as speeding in the school zone. Standard school zone signage was in place to designate the school zone, but seemed to be largely ignored. In an attempt to change driver behavior and to improve the visibility of these signs, the city decided to install driver feedback signs and flashers to emphasize the school zone. Typically, the City builds street signs in-house, but due to the radar and other special electronic components of these signs, they needed to be ordered. Public Works staff approached the Flathead Electric Co-op Round up For Safety Board to request a grant to help offset the additional costs of these signs. The Board chose to fund the project and thanks to their help the new driver feedback signs have been installed and are functioning as designed. Traffic analyses will be performed in the future to try to measure the effectiveness of the new signs.
The City would like to thank the Round up for Safety board and all the Flathead Electric Co-op members who round up their bill for making the school zone at Hedges Elementary a safer place.