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School Zone Safety Tips

Posted on June 23rd, 2020 by Oddo & Babat, P.C.

Children of all ages may be vulnerable to motor vehicle collisions while walking to or from school. At the beginning and end of the school day, there is a lot of traffic. Unfortunately, not all drivers observe the rules of the road. Children and adolescents can become easily distracted, which puts them at greater risk of being hit by a car.

You cannot always be there to protect your children, but you can teach them important safety tips to observe while they are in a busy school zone that can reduce their risk of a collision with a motor vehicle.

1. Avoid Distractions

Distracted walking can be almost as dangerous as distracted driving. When pedestrians walk with their eyes on a cell phone, they are not paying attention to where they are going. This could result in accidents and injuries whether or not a motor vehicle is involved.

First, set rules for your children about cell phone use. Prohibit them while using the phone when walking and insist that they must stop when they take a call or read a text. Second, be sure that you have consequences for any violation of the rules and enforce them strictly. If your kids abuse their phone privileges, take away their devices for a predetermined period of time.

2. Use Sidewalks Whenever Possible

Sidewalks exist to keep pedestrians safe from traffic. Tell your kids to stick to the sidewalks whenever possible. If your children’s route to school includes areas with no sidewalks, teach them to walk along the shoulder of the road with their face to approaching traffic rather than letting the cars come up from behind them.

3. Avoid Jaywalking

Jaywalking means crossing in the middle of the block. It is both dangerous and against the law. Explain to your children what jaywalking is and that not only could they get in trouble for doing it but that they could also get hurt. Teach them to only cross the street at an intersection. If there is a crosswalk, teach them to stay inside it as they cross.

4. Obey All Traffic Signals and Signs

Teach children that the rules of the road apply equally to them as to motor vehicles, and that they must observe stop signs and traffic lights. Many pedestrian crossing signals have symbols instead of words. Explain to them what the symbols mean, especially when the red hand flashes.

We hope that teaching school zone safety tips to your children will prevent them from ever being involved in a motor vehicle accident as a pedestrian. However, one of our attorneys can assist you with legal matters in such an event. 

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