The Journey is Just as Important as the Destination – Getting To and From School Safely

It’s that time of year- the kids are headed back to school with their fresh supplies and lunches in tow, some for the first time ever. As a parent or guardian, safety precautions before your child even arrives at school is likely one of your biggest concerns. Teaching your child tips to be wary of other people and vehicles will help them get to school safely every day.

Pedestrian Safety – Kids walking to school:

• Walk in groups if there are others around.
• Adult supervision is always preferred.
• Always walk on the sidewalk if there is one, if not always walk facing traffic.
• Cross at the crosswalk and use the crossing guard if one is available.
• Look left, right, and left again before crossing. Never try to run across if traffic is coming.
• Avoid distractions – don’t walk and look down at your phone, no ear buds.

Every day about 44 children are hit by cars in the US (16,000 annually) – Safe Kids Worldwide

Drivers – Kids are going back to school; expect them to do the unexpected.

• Slow down anytime you see kids. They may run out for no obvious reason.
• Kids don’t understand stopping times. They think as an adult, you will be able to stop.
• Obey all school speed zones.
• Obey school bus laws.

• Stop at least ten feet away from a school bus with the red lights flashing and the “Stop” arm is extended.
• Stop if you are behind the bus, approaching the bus, or at an intersection where a bus is stopped.
• Don’t move until the red lights are turned off and the “Stop” arm is back against the bus
• If there is a physical barrier such as a guard rail, concrete barrier, or grassy median between the lanes you are traveling in and the lanes of the bus, you can proceed with caution.

• Remind your teen drivers of these rules and laws as they drive to school through school zones.

School Bus Safety

• Arrive five minutes before the bus and never chase a bus that is pulling away.
• Stand five giant steps back from the curb while waiting for the bus.
• Keep straps or cords off your clothes or away from your body when getting on and off the bus so nothing gets caught on the door.
• Stay in your seat on the bus and talk quietly so the driver isn’t distracted.
• If you cross in front of the bus, be sure to walk ten steps ahead and wave to the driver so they know you are there.

For more information, please visit www.chp.edu/besafe.