All school days are the days when drivers need to pay special attention to who’s on and near the road! School zones are filled with kids jumping out of carpool, running to the bus, darting between parked cars, and hanging out in groups at the edges of streets surrounding their school.
If you’re driving near a school and lose concentration, the risk of causing harm to a child is much higher than when you’re driving on a quiet city street. In fact, according to Safe Kids Worldwide, approximately 100 kids in the US are killed yearly while walking to or from school, and about 25,000 other children get injured as a result of school zone crashes.
Our driving instructors at AAA Driving Academy remind everyone to stay under the speed limit and practice extra caution when driving near our many Las Vegas, Nevada , schools! To help keep all students safe, here are some helpful tips for driving safely in a school zone:
Slow down and know the speed limit
In general, school zones have lower speeds than other streets, and there are usually signs posted with the legal speed limit for each area. Speed limits in school zones tend to be 5 to 10 miles per hour less than the regular posted speeds. If you are driving by during recess or right before or after school, it’s smart to reduce your speed even lower as an extra safety measure.
Don’t depend on others to keep watch
Even if you see a crossing guard at the corner or parents driving carpool, don’t relax because you assume they are paying attention. Everyone gets distracted sometimes, and being constantly attentive when you drive helps to prevent accidents.
Check the time
Whenever possible, avoid driving through school zones before school begins or right after it finishes, because there will be much more traffic than usual. If you absolutely must drive through the streets around a school at these times, leave early to get to your destination because you’ll need to drive more slowly.
Getting stuck behind a school bus can be extremely frustrating, but driving in a hurry is hazardous! It’s always dangerous to zip around a bus, and passing a school bus that has stopped to load or unload kids is illegal. Be prepared to be patient.
Watch for walkers
A lot of people linger around school grounds, such as students, teachers, parents, friends, siblings, etc… Many of these people will walk home, crossing streets to get where they need to go. Driving slowly and stopping with plenty of room before each crosswalk are both recommended ways to keep pedestrians safe. Also, never block the crosswalk, look twice before pulling in or backing out of driveways that traverse the sidewalk, and don’t pass a car that has stopped to let people cross the road.
For more tips on driving safely in a school zone (and everywhere!), contact our friendly Las Vegas, Nevada , driving instructors at AAA Driving Academy.
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