National Walk to School Day
You may notice an increase in children walking to school next week. National Walk to School Day is October 2, 2019. The movement encourages communities to promote health and safer routes for students to walk to school. Children pose a special traffic problem because of their unpredictability. You should exercise extreme caution when driving by schools, parks, and through residential streets. Keep your speed down, scan the sides of the roads, and be prepared to stop at any time.
In California, unless otherwise posted, the speed limit is 25 mph within 500 to 1,000 feet of a school while children are outside or crossing the street. Some cities throughout California have adopted lower speed limits in school zones and have posted signs showing the speed as low as 15 mph.
School Bus Passenger Tips
School is starting all across the country. Now is a good time to teach, or remind, your little ones about school bus safety.
- When waiting at the bus stop, stay on the sidewalk, away from the road. Pay attention to what is going on around you. Don’t get distracted by playing with your friends.
- When getting on the bus, find a seat promptly and sit down facing the front of the bus. Sit still and talk quietly with your neighbor. Don’t distract the bus driver with a lot of ruckus. Let them do their job safely driving you to school.
- When exiting the bus, be aware of passing cars. Put distance between you and the bus so the bus driver will be able to see you. Stay away from the wheels of the bus and remember to cross in front of the bus, not behind it.
Back-To-School Season is Here Again
So, we’re already into the middle of August, which means one thing: Back-to-School! For many parents, the day couldn’t come fast enough, and for most students the moans and groans begin. However, with the commencement of the new school year, means more and more children out there on the roads, whether crossing the street, walking or biking to school. During the academic school year especially, drivers need to be a lot more attentive on the road. And, although parents should talk to their children about safety as they head back to school, drivers can also do their part in the wellbeing of our students.
- Double-Check Those Crosswalks
Double check intersections and always make complete stops when warranted. Students have a tendency of appearing out of nowhere when you least expect it.
- Obey School Zones Speed Limits
When children are nearby, school zones require you to obey the 20 or 25 mph or slower speed limit, regardless of the day of week or time of day.
- Respect the Yellow Bus & Those Flashing Lights
Those big yellow buses are full of children being transported to and from school. There are special regulations that are established to make sure these students get to their destination safe and sound.
When kids are present, School Zones are Slow Zones. Here’s some simple advice to keep the kids, and your driving record, safe:
- When entering a marked school zone, your foot should be covering the brake pedal and your eyes scanning the road. You know how kids can be: they’ll jump out of nowhere and run across the street when you least expect it.
- Regardless if it’s a school day or not, when children are in sight, school zones require you to follow the posted 25mph or slower speed limit. For example, if it’s a Saturday night at 10pm and you are in a school zone when kids are present (maybe a school dance just let out), you still need to adjust your speed and obey the slower school zone speed limit.
When you slow down for children, you not only make yourself a safe driver, you also help alert other unaware drivers who may not see the obstacles you see. When they see you slowing down, their driving intuition will kick in and they will follow your safe-driving lead.