EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

October 19, 2012

Police target Route 213 speeders

By Brian Messenger bmessenger@eagletribune.com
The Eagle-Tribune

---- — METHUEN — Officers were out in force on Route 213 this week, conducting stepped up speed enforcement on the busy roadway that resulted in well over 100 of traffic stops, police said.

The crackdown — a collaboration between the Methuen Police Department and troopers at the Andover state police barracks — took place yesterday and Wednesday between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Police Chief Joseph Solomon said Methuen officers alone pulled over 100 vehicles Wednesday.

Five Methuen cruisers and two cruisers from the Andover state police barracks were used during the sting. Route 213 spans the city, connecting interstates 495 and 93 with two eastbound and two westbound lanes. The speed limit is 55 mph.

Solomon said speeders were issued a mix of written warnings and tickets, while those travelling just above the speed limit were given written warnings. The chief said it’s not uncommon for drivers to travel 75 mph or faster on Route 213.

”The idea is to show the presence,” said Solomon. “The message got out. If we prevented one accident or one person being seriously injured, we were successful.”

The team of state troopers involved in the sting was led by Lt. Stephen Walsh.

Solomon said Methuen police conduct traffic enforcement daily, with three officers and a sergeant assigned to a traffic unit. But every few months, Solomon said the Police Department selects a problem area in the city and picks up enforcement.