School zones are crowded, jammed with traffic and kids walking everywhere. The area around a School can be chaotic and confusing with parents and children everywhere in a hurry. As a driver, the most important thing you can do to protect children, is to slow down.
Last week, where my child goes to school, a mother and her 10 year old daughter were struck down, run over and killed while walking along the side of the road by a young driver, driving too fast and not paying attention. This tragedy has devastated a family, changed a community and destroyed the life of the young driver.
Can someone please explain to me, why anyone in their right mind, would drive too fast through a School Zone?
I drop off and pick up my child everyday at an elementary school, and each time I am around the school area I have to hold my breath, grip the steering wheel and cringe with fear as I see parents and other cars, driving through the school zone. There are cars are driving on the wrong side of the road, rolling through stop signs and driving too fast without care.
It is the purpose of this article to remind all drivers to drive with caution, watch carefully and slow down when driving through a school zone.
A school zone is the area surrounding a school or near a crosswalk leading to a school that has a likely presence of pedestrians.
School zones are clearly marked with bright yellow and green signs indicating the times of reduced speeds during school hours or will say, “When children present”.
The average speed in a school zone will range from 15 to 25 mph and each state may differ.
Set a good example to your children by obeying all laws and educate them about the safety of walking next to, and crossing the street. Remind them as they are walking to and from school not to play around, run out into the street and to pay attention. Teach them to stay within the safety zones near streets and in and around buses.
Always give a school bus the right of away and stay clear of the bus zones.
School buses will use yellow and red flashing lights to indicate that they are about to stop and let children on or off the bus. Once the red flashing lights are displayed and the red stop arms extended, all traffic, both directions must come to a complete stop. This does not apply to apposing traffic separated by a barrier or median.
Pedestrians have the right of way. Be cautious of children walking along the side of the roadway and yield to all pedestrians in cross walks whether the cross walk is marked or not.
Watch for children walking out from in between parked cars or darting across the street. For these reason alone, it is vital that you drive slowly and be on watch.
An entire community plays a very important role in keeping school zones safe. With the hustle and bustle during school hours it is up to each of us, including parent, child and community member to be mindful of the laws, safety and most important to slow down.
Article also posted on Triond by Scott Hallock