Andrea Rondeau column: Parents worst offenders in school zones

They get out with their young children and proceed to jaywalk across the street

It’s back to school, and that means slowing down and following the rules in school zones once more. I’m looking at you, parents.

Rules and regulations in school zones is one of those topics we get at least one or two articles about from various sources each year at this time. We ran a reminder/warning from the RCMP in Wednesday’s edition. And they are out and watching. I drive through at least one school zone each weekday morning and on Tuesday, an RCMP officer was standing in the traffic island in the middle of the zone, dressed conspicuously in a reflective vest, eyeing the traffic. Just his presence was an abrupt reminder that it was September, not August.

But some of the wackiest driving and other behaviours I’ve seen in school zones have actually been those of parents coming to drop their kids off.

Sure, there are those who figure they don’t need to slow down for a school zone, or at least they don’t need to slow down to 30 km/h, and race right through.

But it seems some of the most dangerous things I’ve seen have been done by those who are actually stopping in the school zone to drop their kids off.

I can’t even count how many parents I’ve seen pull up to the curb, let their children out, then pull a u-turn in the middle of the school zone and head back from whence they came. Sometimes speeding as they go, because some parents seem to forget they’re in a school zone as soon as their own kids are out of the car.

Another really common no-no I see is a parent, usually running late, pulling up to the curb and parking (sometimes even leaving the vehicle idling — bad). Then they get out with their young children and proceed to jaywalk across the street to the school, sometimes without regard for traffic. When there is a crosswalk mere feet away, often manned by crossing guards. It’s enough to make me cover my eyes and shake my head. What are their kids learning from this behaviour? Do you want them to jaywalk when they’re not with you? Because they will. You’ve taught them to ignore the crosswalk and do just that. How can you expect anything else?

I’m always amazed there aren’t more crashes among the parents who, having dropped their children off for school, then totally fail to signal or even look over their shoulders as they pull back out into traffic. Sometimes school drop-off zones look like a free-for-all with the number of parents who don’t seem to know, or just ignore, the driving rules.

So yes, getting people to slow down once again for school zones is really important. But it would also be a good idea for schools to address rules of the road during drop-off times with parents. Many of them could definitely use the reminder.

Just Posted

Robot proposed for cleaning of Town of Lake Cowichan reservoir

“It’s a low risk techonology that should be explored”

Swan seeking long-term Lake Cowichan residents

Kathryn Swan has lived in Lake Cowichan for 17 years but still… Continue reading

Mary Lowther column: Are you fit for gardening?

One wants to stay in shape to be able to garden when she gets old

Tim Hortons Smile Cookie Campaign raises $15,425 in Cowichan – that’s a lot of dough

By Mike Hancock During the week of Sept. 16-22, delicious Smile Cookies… Continue reading

Renowned Cowichan carver Simon Charlie remembered for his art and teaching

Cowichan Tribes’ carver’s birthday is Thursday

B.C. to restrict nicotine content, bring in 20% tax on vaping products

Province will also restrict candy and fruit flavoured vaping products to adult-only stores

Use of force deemed justifiable in arrest of suspect after snowy chase near Nanaimo

Independent Investigation Office of B.C. reports on incident from late last winter

‘It’s been 12 years’: Father of murdered B.C. real estate agent pleads for mayor’s help

Lindsay Buziak was stabbed to death on Feb. 2, 2008 in Saanich. Her case is unsolved.

B.C. woman sends fight to reduce preventable medical errors to Victoria

Teri McGrath and South Okanagan senior’s centre members presented 150 signature petition to local MLA

B.C. First Nation Chief Ed John faces historic sex charges

John served as minister for children and families under then-premier Ujjah Dosanjh

Yelling at your dog might hurt its long-term mental health: study

Researchers find dogs trained using negative reinforcement are more ‘pessimistic’

Transgender inmate in Surrey denied transfer to women’s prison

Petitioner argued denial of transfer to women’s prison was unreasonable and unfair

Community uses loophole to paint 16 rainbow crosswalks after B.C. council says no

So far 11 rainbows are painted and five planned, all since council denied the first proposal in September

Most Read