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Driving in School Zones

As majority of young students return to school in person this fall, drivers must be aware of the potential dangers of traveling through school zones. The combination of high numbers of pedestrians and young, inexperienced teen drivers make school zones especially perilous. Every year, about 21,000 children are injured in school zones. Statistics show that two-thirds of drivers exceed school zone speed limits. Follow these safety tips when traveling through school zones:
• Slow down. Obey school zone speed limits and traffic rules.
• Watch for children and pedestrians throughout school zones.
• Never pass a school bus when lights are flashing and the stop sign is extended. Always stop for school buses when children are boarding and exiting the bus.
• Put away all distracting devices.
• Do not block crosswalks.
• Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding a stop sign. It is illegal to pass through occupied, guarded crosswalks in school zones.
• Watch for children on bicycles. Children are typically unaware of traffic laws such as yielding. Always give them theright of way.
• Avoid making u-turns and backing up in active school zones.
• If you are not picking up or dropping off students, avoid traveling through school zones during the most active hours of 7-8 AM and 3-4 PM if possible.

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