Our children are officially back to school meaning more children are walking to and from school daily and there are more school buses on the road. More traffic means additional precautions should be taken, especially when there are young lives at stake. No matter where you are in the country, be prepared for back to school and focus on the roads even more carefully than you did before.
Not only driving around town but during school pick up and drop off times, traffic can get a bit chaotic. Be sure to follow all signs, crossing guards, and other school zone instructions. A few things to avoid are:
- Double parking blocks visibility for children and other vehicles as well as takes up unnecessary space
- Unloading or loading children across the street from the school. Use designated pick up and drop off areas
A great solution for traffic congestion is carpooling or having kids ride the bus. A sad reality is that most of the children who lose their lives in bus-related incidents are between 4 and 7 years old according to the National Safety Council. Being hit by a bus, or by a motorist illegally passing a stopped bus, these children can be spared this danger by following simple rules of the road.
Here are some tips to make sure you drive as safely as possible for yourself and others.
- Obey speed limit signs. The number of km per hour is given perfect conditions and it is a LIMIT, not a recommendation
- Be extra cautious of signals, yield signs, crosswalks, and school zone signals
- Stop for school buses loading or unloading children
- Obey crossing guard signals. They are our friends! They are not there to slow down your morning but rather to protect our children.
- Watch out for children near schools, bus stops, sidewalks, bike paths, parking lots, etc.
- Pass in a school zone
- Make U-turns in a school zone
- Text while driving in a school zone (but you really should never do this as a general safety measure and also against the law)
- Never ever allow yourself to become distracted
Remember to leave handicap spaces and emergency lanes available for appropriate vehicles. Being five minutes late to your destination is not as important as making sure everyone around you is safe.
For the children, stress the importance of the rules of the road when walking or biking to and from school. Have them wear helmets at all times! Head injuries are greatly reduced when helmets are used. Teach your children to ride bikes with the flow of traffic and use proper hand signals when turning or stopping. If possible, have your child ride with a friend or sibling, there is safety in numbers.
Our dedicated team is committed to the Erie Mutual core values and will provide you with the insurance experience you expect. We commit to providing additional safety tips such as these as part of the Erie Value.
Please contact us with any questions you may have about this or any other topic related to your insurance.