Once again it is that time of the year when our children return to school. School is back in session for most of us during the next couple of weeks and that means that the area around our schools will be more traffic-congested and dangerous. Please consider these safety tips to help keep our children safe. If you have a teenage driver (or are one) these are especially important.
1. Watch for kids getting on and off school buses, even if the bus is on the other side of a 4-lane road. Unless there is a median separating the directional lanes of traffic, all vehicles must stop when the bus’ red lights are flashing. Be aware that buses can be out as early as 6:15 in the morning and as late as 5:00 in the afternoon.
2. Go slow while driving on or near school property. This is no time to show off your car’s power or your fancy driving skills. Any area crowded with people is a dangerous place to drive and requires drivers to use added caution.
3. Pay attention to the reduced speed limits in school zones. Not all school zones have flashing lights to remind drivers of the reduced speeds. Most of the schools in our area are also using various times for students to report and to leave at the end of the school day. Children count on us to be responsible and it is our job to help keep them safe. Keep in mind speeding through a school zone can also be quite expensive.
4. Teenagers who drive to school should leave for school early, and leave for home late. By avoiding the mad rush in the school parking lot by only 5 minutes, they will be driving in a much safer environment.
5. Teenagers who drive to school should be careful not to leave valuables like cell-phones, ipods, shoes, wallets, or other items in their cars where they can be seen. This invites theft. And finally, parents please remind your teenager of the new cell phone laws that prohibit a person under the age of 18 from using a cell phone while operating a motor vehicle.
Thank you for caring about each other, and especially about our children. If you have any questions or concerns, please call me at 430-6508.