Streets of Speed - Tickets issued to Weslaco seatbelt violators

A handful of Weslaco police officers team up with the Speedzapper to ticket seatbelt violators outside Memorial Elementary School.

The school's parking lot near 18th Street and Border Avenue turned into the staging ground for the operation.

Officers caught up with parents as they were driving away after school.

"We're just making sure everybody is in a car seat... And has their seatbelt on," one officer said.

Roxanne Casas was the first motorist to be stopped.

She was also the first to receive a ticket.

Speedzapper: "Can we ask why he wasn't buckled up?"

Passenger: "We told him too... He takes it off."

Casas was then flagged over to another officer nearby who was waiting to write her up.

The process continued.

The results were alarming.

Speedzapper: "How long were you going to go without his seatbelt?"

Driver: "Up to the stop and that's it."

Cop: "You need to pull up right over here."

Cesar Rangel is the only one of 6 in the vehicle he's driving who's properly restrained.

There are children inside.

Speedzapper: "Lets just take a look... 1, 2, 3, 4... I count 5 people who are not in seatbelts... Only you would be protected in an accident. Is that fair to them?

Cesar: "No. We'll try next time to put everyone's seatbelt on."

Officer Danny Elizondo said scenes like the one at the school play out all over the city.

He credited Streets of Speed on Action 4 News for helping to raise awareness about seatbelt and carseat use.

"Being on the program... they [drivers] see themselves on TV ... they'll think again let me put on my seatbelt... I don't want this to happen again... And of course financially it's a burden on anybody to get a 200 dollar ticket," he said.

Melissa Herrera was caught breaking the law.

Speedzapper: "We have a very simple question to ask... 'Why isn't he in his seatbelt?'"

Melissa: "Who? Ohhhh! Cause he just got out and didn't put it on."

Speedzapper: "Whose responsibility is it? Yours or his?

Melissa: "Mine."

School parents who were in compliance share their thoughts about the operation-- and the violators.

"I think it's just like anything ... People just think that nothing is going to happen to them," Natalie Sanchez said.

Frank Ontiveros said he tries to action against people who don't have children properly restrained in vehicles.

"We're always calling Weslaco P.D. to match up the plates and try to find them," he explained.

You know what the Speedzapper always says to that!

"You've been zapped!"

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