Drivesmart: Back to school means school zones

School zones have a 30 kilometre per hour speed limit for many reasons.

School zones have a 30 kilometre per hour speed limit for many reasons.

You have more time to see, react to and prevent a collision if the situation presents itself. Pedestrians have more time to make a safe crossing decision and are less likely to choose incorrectly. Should the unthinkable occur, they are more likely to survive the collision than they would at just a few kilometres per hour faster. Thinking that you can safely drive “10 over” here is just plain stupid. Sorry.

Parents of school children can be frequent offenders as well. Don’t take your turn in the drop off zone, park wherever you will and let your passengers out wherever there is room. It saves time, but again, it’s selfish and unsafe.

I’ve been involved in the investigation of a fatal collision where a child ran down the passenger side of the vehicle, across the rear and out into traffic where he was stuck by a passing car. Mom will wish for the rest of her life that she took the time to use the driveway. Don’t join her.

Obey the directions of school crossing guards. The law says that you have to. Not only do they help children cross the road safely on their way to and from school, they will report you to police if you don’t follow their direction. If you fail the grade as a driver here, you might receive a bad report card later on in the term.

Children don’t always use the crosswalks, marked or unmarked. When they do, you need to stop and let them cross. When they don’t, you are still required to exercise due diligence not to collide with them. They are children and don’t always make the best decisions. That’s why they’re off to school.

Tim Schewe is a retired constable with many years of traffic law enforcement. To comment or learn more, please visit DriveSmartBC.ca

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