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Traffic sting nets 209 speedy drivers

More than 200 drivers are having to dig farther than their car ashtrays to pay for a recent trip on the Lee Roy Selmon Crosstown Expressway.

In less than 10 hours Saturday, Tampa police wrote 209 speeding tickets and eight other citations in a construction zone on the expressway just west of 50th Street.

"Ideally, it's not to catch as many speeders as you can, but to educate the people about driving safely and preventing accidents," police spokesman Joe Durkin said Tuesday.

Durkin said the construction area is a "hot spot for (speeding) complaints" right now because of the volume of traffic and magnitude of construction.

"We're always responding to complaints throughout the city, and we're also going to give additional attention to areas that are warranted to ensure people drive safe," Durkin said.

Expressway complaints led to the crackdown that lasted from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Along the 50 mph zone, police issued tickets for speeds ranging from 68 mph to 93 mph.

"As need fits and resources are available, we'll be revisiting these areas," Durkin said.

The amount for a speeding fine is doubled in active construction zones.