School is back in session! After a long nice summer, it’s now time for the kids to get back in the school spirit, where new opportunities will arise. In addition to getting them ready to go back, it’s important to take precautions measures on road for young pedestrians. School buses are now in route, picking up and dropping off students to and from school. This means that kids will be on the road, walking to their bus-stop, walking home, or even walking to school. As a driver, it is important to follow school zone and bus laws in order to avoid catastrophic situations.
Safety Precautions for Young Pedestrians:
- Don’t block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn, forcing young pedestrians to go around you; this could put them in the path of moving traffic.
- In a school zone when flashers are blinking, stop and yield to the young pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection.
- ALWAYS stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign.
- Take extra care to look out for children in school zones, near playgrounds and parks, and in all residential areas.
- Never pass a vehicle stopped for young pedestrians.
- Always use extreme caution to avoid striking young pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way.
School Bus Safety:
- If you’re driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It will give you more time to stop once the yellow lights start flashing.
- NEVER pass a bus from behind, or from either direction if you’re on an undivided road.
- If the yellow or red lights are flashing and the stop arm is extended, traffic MUST stop.
- The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus.
- ALWAYS be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks.
Following these road precautions will decreases the number of accidents that occur to children who are simply on their way to school. Every child should make it safe and sound!
Have a happy first week!