Tuesday, September 08, 2009

B.C.'s Back To School

Road Safety Tips From RCMP

The beginning of the 2009/2010 school is an exciting time when children return to meet new and old friends and teachers.

However it is also a time when they are at increased risk of transportation related injuries from pedestrian, bicycle, school bus, and motor vehicle crashes. Many more children are on the road each morning and afternoon and it demands that all drivers’ change their driving patterns and be vigilant..

It is time for everyone – students, motorists, parents, and educators, to improve their traffic safety practices.

The painted yellow curb lines that prohibit parking in front of a school are there for a reason: to ensure that drivers’ vision and their ability to spot children on the sidewalk or roadway is not impeded.

During the busy back to school season, parents dropping off and picking up their children, and drivers commuting through school zones, need to keep the following facts in mind:

The posted speed limit in school zones is 30 km/h from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. when students are in class.

• The posted speed limit in playground zones is 30 km/h from dawn to dusk, every day of the year.

• Drivers must watch for children walking on medians, roadways, and curbs, and be cautious when approaching intersections.

• Until children are about eight years of age, it is difficult for them to assess whether a vehicle is moving or not.

• When children see an approaching car, they first notice the colour - not how fast the vehicle is traveling.

• Children assume cars stop instantly, and do not have the ability to estimate whether there is enough time to cross the road without being struck.

• A child’s field of vision is one-third narrower than an adult’s.

• Children have difficulty determining where sounds are coming from.

• Most pedestrian traffic injuries happen to five- to nine-year-olds in mid-block crossings, and to 10- to 14-year-olds at intersections.

• It takes a vehicle 13 metres to come to a complete stop when driving 30 km/h, but 27 metres - more than double that distance - when driving 50 km/h.

Make the school year one to remember....for life !


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