UPD’s policy change a smart move


File photo, university police

Bad drivers on campus can start expecting consequences.

Starting Nov. 1, Wichita State’s campus police began handing out traffic citations to drivers who run stop signs or don’t yield to pedestrians at crosswalks.

Until now, UPD had been giving verbal warnings for these infractions on campus. Now the citations will be handed out at the discretion of the officers.

According to a university news release, this change comes in the aftermath of a 2016 incident in which a professor was almost hit by a distracted driver.

While this will shift into another arena for the university to make money off of kids who swear they didn’t do a rolling stop, the move is smart.

Whether or not the policy decreases the rate these incidents occur will remain to be seen, but something more than nothing should be done.

It’s not as though the rules of the road, and the rules of generally decent driving habits, change once you’re on campus.

One thing that unites WSU students is our shared experience of being nearly cut off at the knee by a punk that didn’t want to slow down at a crosswalk. It’s universal, like seasonal depression or the fear that you’ll lose the receipt for the books you rented.

If a student walking to class is nearly side-swiped by a driver who doesn’t yield at the crosswalk, that driver should be punished. The same way they would be off campus by a city police officer. Failing to recognize right of way on campus should absolutely be a ticket-able offense because it’s dangerous to all parties involved.

And if you truly didn’t know that your car should be brought to a stop at stop signs, you deserve a ticket anyway for being behind the curve. This may not have put you or anyone else in danger explicitly, but even a blind pig finds a truffle now and again.

As upsetting as getting a ticket for a rolling stop might be, it serves a safety purpose that can’t reasonably be argued against.

The new UPD policy is certainly a money-making scheme, but it’s one far easier to stomach than an increase in tuition or book prices, even if those are done anyway.

The new policy makes logical, legal sense. As WSU is a public university, it’s hard to imagine how the basic rules of the road off campus weren’t the same on campus.