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Safety Tips for School

Reflective post strips mounted on school crossing

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

It seems hard to believe, but another summer vacation is coming to an end. Soon enough bells will be ringing to mark the beginning of a new school year and extracurricular activities will be in full swing. School days will be followed by pedestrian traffic, vehicle congestion, bus stops, and lots of homework.
According to research conducted by The National Safety Council, more children are hit by cars near schools than in any other location. For this reason alone, it's extremely important for parents and children to put safety at the top of the list when getting ready for school.
Students can prepare for the back-to-school season by following a few safety tips.

When Walking to School

  • Always take the same route every day, walk with a group of friends and never take shortcuts.
  • Walk on the sidewalk. If a sidewalk is not available on your street, walk in the grass facing the direction of the traffic.
  • Prior to crossing the street, stop and look left, right and left again - looking in both directions twice, saves lives.
  • Practice walking to school with your child. Familiarize children with safety signs and precautions.
  • Don't walk and text- keep your head up to avoid walking into oncoming traffic.

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Crossing guard in vest with paddle sign

When Driving Through School Zones

  • When flashers are blinking, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection.
  • Never block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light. This will force pedestrians to go around you and could potentially force them into the path of moving traffic.
  • Don't pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians.
  • Always use extreme caution to avoid striking pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way.
  • Slow down - the speed limit in school zones is reduced to 25 mph for both the safety of pedestrians and yourself.
School Buses

Sharing the Road with School Buses

  • Never pass a bus from behind - or from either direction if you're on an undivided road.
  • When you see red flashing lights and an extended stop arm - that means the bus has stopped to pick-up/drop-off kids. Remain stopped until the bus releases the stop arm.
  • Motorist must stop about 10 feet away from a bus at a bus stop. This space is considered the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus.
  • Don't tailgate a bus as they make frequent and sudden stops. Rule of thumb - stay far enough back so you can see the driver in the bus rear-view mirror.
  • Always give school buses the right of way when they're trying to merge back into traffic.
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