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A recent study by ZenDrive found that Arizona ranks near the bottom when it comes to school zone safety. “Fifty-seven million kids walk, bike, take the bus or get a ride to school everyday in the U.S. It’s a necessary journey, and sometimes it can be dangerous” according to Zendrive, and their mission is to make the roads safe through studies like this one, based on data and analytics, to help bring to light a deadly problem in the U.S. that needs to be improved.

School Safety Tips:

Speed

The 15-mph speed zone is there to protect children who need to cross the street. This speed control is used when there is no stop sign or traffic signal to assist children in the crossing.  Be sure to adhere to the 15-mph speed limit at the instance of the first in-street traffic sign and maintain the slower speed until you fully clear the marked crosswalk.  When you are near a school always be conscious of your speed so that you can react quickly to any situation.

The Crosswalk

Drivers are not allowed to enter a school crosswalk if there is a pedestrian in any part of the crosswalk.  Be aware of your surroundings as you approach the school crosswalk and be ready to stop. Drivers can resume the street’s posted speed limit once their vehicle has fully cleared the crosswalk markings. 

Passing

You are not allowed to pass another vehicle in the school zone, even if you are going 15-mph.  If another vehicle is traveling at a slower speed, you must slow down so you do not pass that vehicle in the school zone.  This is important for keeping peripheral visibility in case of a crossing pedestrian.

Parking

All drivers need to comply with the NO PARKING, NO STANDING, NO STOPPING signage as it is there to ensure that the student crossing areas are kept clear and visible.  It is vital to comply, even if it’s just for a few seconds. Drivers are also not allowed to park within 30 feet of a stop sign, or 20 feet of an intersection, to maintain visibility of pedestrians. 

School Bus

When approaching a school bus with flashing lights and extended stop sign, you must stop. Watch for children exiting and crossing from in front and behind the school bus. Do not proceed until the children are out of the road and the school bus retracts sign and turns off lights. If there is a divided roadway with some kind of barrier separating oncoming traffic and the school bus is on the other side, then you do not need to stop.

As drivers, you must understand the traffic laws for these locations and follow them at all times. Remember to be patient as you approach and drive through school zones so that all students can get to and from school safely.

Also, avoid being distracted when driving!

Let’s have a great school year!


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