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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

DeKalb Police Stepping Up Patrols For 'Illinois Speed Awareness Day'


July 26 is recognized as "Speed Awareness Day" in the state.

More than 360 people died in 2015 as a result from speeding. 

The DeKalb Police Department is posting awareness signs and bumping up its patrols for the campaign. 

Commander Steve Lekkas said the extra efforts are meant to bring attention to the risks of driving too fast.

“Somebody passes you, and they’re flying to get by you," he says, "and then suddenly you’re at the next red light and they’re still right in front of you. If people just realize it doesn’t really save you that much time, but it just causes so much more danger. And obviously, [it] puts you at risk of being fined, losing your license, and things like that.”

Lekkas said speeding is a long-standing problem, and that drivers need to be vigilant every time they're on the road.

“It’s not something that’s just going to go away because everybody is busy; people have to be certain places," he said. "And some people just get in the habit of ’30 miles an hour to them is too slow, or even 70 on the highway is too slow.’”

Lekkas said pedestrians face much higher fatality rates when hit by cars driving 30 miles-per-hour.

He also stresses the importance of buckling up and making sure children are secure in car seats.