Back to school time means that there will be more cars on the road as students and parents alike are settling back into their regularly scheduled routines. With that said, all motorists must adopt safer driving practices in order to keep kids and families safe as they make their way to school, sports practices, and other activities. Here are some back to school driving safety tips that will help drivers and pedestrians make it to their destinations in one piece.
Always remember to abide by the posted speed limit, especially in residential areas and near schools and recreation centers. It’s a simple rule and something we all learned in driver’s education, but it’s important to keep up with safe habits on the road. Studies show that pedestrian fatality rates increase with the speed that the vehicle was travelling. By maintaining a slower speed, you’re able to pay more attention other drivers and pedestrians, especially as school children sometimes run or chase balls into the street. In the unfortunate event of an accident, your slower rate of speed will greatly increase the pedestrian’s chance of survival.
More city streets than ever now feature designated lanes for bicyclists. This means that cyclists will feel safer about riding their bikes in the street. This also means that you as a driver must be mindful of the smaller bicycles, particularly in your blind spot when making turns. Always check your blind spot and signal your intentions, and decrease speed when driving beside or near a cyclist. Always maintain a passing distance of three feet.
When approaching a red light or stop sign, make sure that you stop before you reach the cross walk. Stopping your vehicle within the lines of the cross walk puts pedestrians at risk by having to walk around your car, which can force them to walk closer to moving traffic. Slowly approach the cross walk and keep an eye out for any last-minute pedestrians entering the cross walk, even after the light turns green.
Driving safety begins before you even start your car. Many accidents occur because we’re rushing to get to our destination. Making sure that we set schedules for ourselves and stick with them can help ease the sometimes frantic nature of having busy lifestyles, especially during the school year. Include time in your travel for rush hour traffic and congestion near schools and recreation centers as kids and teachers arrive in the mornings and leave in the afternoons.
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