BACK TO SCHOOL DRIVING TIPS
School days bring congestion: Yellow school buses are picking up the children, and kids on bikes are trying to get to school before the bell rings, and parents are trying to drop the kids off before going to work. It’s never more important for drivers to slow down and pay extra attention then when children are going back and forth to school.
If you’re dropping children off, be aware that more children are hit by cars near schools than any other location. Schools often have special drop-off procedures for the school year. Make sure you know them for the safety of all the children.
Important rules to follow:
* Don’t double park; it blocks the visibility for other children and vehicles.
* Don’t load or unload children across the street from the school.
* Carpool if possible to reduce the number of vehicles at the school.
Most children who lose their lives in bus-related incidences are 4-7 years old and they are walking. They are hit by a bus, or by a motorist illegally passing a stopped bus: A few precautions go a long way toward keeping children safe.
* Don’t block the crosswalk when stopping at a red light or waiting to make a turn, forcing 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 pedestrians crossing in the crosswalk or intersection.
* Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign.
* Take extra care to look for children in school zones, near playgrounds and parks, and in all residential areas.
* Don’t honk your horn or rev your engine to scare a pedestrian even if you have the right of way.
* Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians.
* Always use extra caution to avoid striking pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way.
(continued next week)