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Expect a ticket instead of a warning if you're caught speeding in Tempe

A new policy is being implemented in Tempe requiring officers to ticket any drivers pulled over for speeding.

The initiative, dubbed Operation Slow Down, is aimed at reducing vehicle crashes resulting from speeding, reckless driving and drag racing. The operation started Jan. 15 and will remain in effect until March. 

“... Between Jan. 15 and March 15, anyone pulled over for a traffic violation in Tempe will receive a ticket without warning. You will also notice an increase in digital radar signs around the city,” said Tempe Vice Mayor Jennifer Adams, who announced the operation at the beginning of the month.

The initiative comes at a time where there has been a recent uptick in accidents caused by aggressive driving. In 2023, there were 32 speed-related accidents, up 40% from the average between 2012 and 2022. 

Adams said she has already seen an increase in vehicles being pulled over. 

“The word will get out and people have already noticed more people pulled over. I talked to several constituents that have said, normally I wouldn’t necessarily see an officer at a certain location, and officers are there and they’re pulling people over. So it’s already working,” Adams said. 

In addition to speeding, the city is trying to eliminate drag racing, which continues to be a concern across the Valley. In 2023, Tempe handed down 259 charges related to street racing, Adams said.

Jacob Suever joined KJZZ as an intern in January 2024. Suever is currently studying for his bachelor’s degree in sports journalism at Arizona State University. Previously, Suever has interned with PBS NewsHour West as a production intern, as well as with the San Francisco Giants as a scoreboard operator.Suever is currently the broadcast director and play-by-play voice for Phoenix College Athletics, and is aiming to broadcast more than 60 baseball and basketball games this season. Suever, an Atlanta native, has a huge passion for radio broadcasting. He says his inspiration throughout his childhood and early college career has been Steve Holman, radio voice of the Atlanta Hawks.Outside of the arena, Suever is also passionate about his community, and understands the importance that local news can play on the well-being, safety and health of a population.Growing up, Suever had a very unique educational experience. Suever transitioned from Atlanta Public Schools at the elementary level to attend the prestigious Ron Clark Academy, a school that gave Suever the ability to see the world in a different way. By age 14, Suever had traveled to more than 20 states, to five countries and to three continents. To this day, Suever employs some of the techniques he learned in middle school to communicate and connect with others around the globe.Suever hopes to use his opportunity with KJZZ to continue to expand his knowledge as a reporter and use his stories to make a positive impact in the community.