Teen's death prompts Des Moines school traffic changes
Des Moines has redefined its definition of a "school district."
Why it matters: It expands school speed zones beyond areas surrounding a schoolhouse to include facilities like stadiums or practice fields.
- The action was prompted by the April 28 hit-and-run death of 14-year-old East High School student Ema Cardenas.
Catch up fast: Cardenas was hit while crossing the 1600 block of East University Avenue after classes.
- Her family, friends, school advocates and area residents led a march calling for traffic changes soon after her death.
State of play: The City Council adopted definitional changes on June 27.
- City staffers will move school flasher equipment near the site of the accident by the fall.
Driving the news: More changes are proposed as part of a larger project expected to begin in 2024, pending funding.
- The pedestrian crossing flashers along that segment of East University would be updated with speed feedback signs.
- Multiple new HAWK signals — which flash lights for motorists to slow down to allow pedestrians to cross the street — are planned.
Of note: Terra Flipping, 38, of DSM was charged with a felony count of leaving the scene of an accident in connection with Cardenas' death.
- A hearing in that case is set for Wednesday.
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