It’s that time of year again when children head back to school School buses, safety monitors, crosswalks and school-aged children crossing the road present additional potential hazards for motorists. In order to give greater driver awareness, the following information will provide you with some tips and suggestions to help you prepare for this time of year. • Children may not always see an oncoming vehicle due to other distractions. Be prepared when you sight a stopped school bus that a child may be crossing in front of the bus. • Motorists in either direction, on an undivided roadway, are required to come to a complete stop when a school bus has its red lights on. Be aware of your surroundings and pay special attention when approaching a bus coming to a stop. • State/ Provincial laws vary regarding stopped school busses on a divided highway. However, all motorists traveling behind the school bus, in the same direction, are required to stop. When traveling in the opposite direction on a divided highway, motorists should scan their surroundings; to be sure that no children are crossing. • Adhere to all posted speed limits in an around school zones and be aware that at anytime a child could veer into your path. Never assume anything. • Many school-aged children are within walking distance of their school and are not bussed. These children walk to school. Be aware that there could be some children walking on sidewalks where there is no crosswalk advocates assisting them on their journey. • Follow the rules of a crosswalk safety monitor when in a school zone. The monitor is there to ensure the safety of the school-aged child. In addition, you can help to ensure their safety by paying close attention to the crosswalk monitor. • Pay a little more attention. It’s time to fall back and with that comes less daylight hours and earlier darkness. Before you know it, it’s dark when you leave work. This will contribute to reduced visibility on the road and sometimes driving conditions that you may not immediately recognize. Even if you are driving a route that you are used to driving, pay special attention to other motorists, pedestrians, cyclists and be on the lookout for any animals that may cross your path • Those precious months of the summer are gone and the school bells are ringing. Be prepared, be aware and be mindful that school is back in session. A little more time to make your journey will go a long way.
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