It’s September, and that means that school buses are back on the road, and children are filling the schools and playgrounds. The Regina Police Service is reminding motorists to be mindful of school zones and obey speed limits.
School and playground speed limits of 40 km/h, are in effect from 8:00 a.m. till 10:00 p.m., seven days a week, 365 days of the year. Studies show that at 40 km/h, 85% of pedestrians struck by a vehicle survive. At 60 km/hr, a vehicle needs an extra 65 feet to come to a complete stop; and only 15% of pedestrians struck by vehicles survive. Considering school zones are full of young children who are likely distracted by all of the excitement of returning to school, it is imperative that motorists respect school zone laws. Even a 10 km/hr reduction in speed can potentially save a life.
When dropping children off at school, please comply with “no parking” and “no stopping” zones in front of schools. Parking in these zones restricts the view of the curb where children cross, which would otherwise cue motorists to stop, putting children at greater risk.
Parents and other motorists are often distracted watching their own children head into the school, so please pay extra attention while driving in a school zone. Stopping (in the allowed parking zones) to watch your child safely cross the street is much safer than slowly driving past and watching them. Avoid having your children cross the busy street by dropping them off on the same side of the street as the school. If you can’t avoid having your children cross the street when picking them up or dropping them off, park your vehicle legally, get out and accompany them across the street safely.
Parents are also reminded to talk with their children about issues like crossing the street safely, not using an electronic device while walking or crossing the street, and looking both ways to be sure traffic has stopped. Children benefit from this discussion, especially if they engage in planning good safety practices.
The Regina Police Service commends motorists who practice safe driving habits and encourages all drivers to respect the rules of the road. As our city grows, traffic increases on our roadways these good habits become even more important. Remember, obeying all traffic laws and being a safe, courteous driver helps protect our children and makes Regina a safer community for all.
Have a great school year!