The end of summer means that thousands of Texarkana children will be returning to school in the coming days. The Texarkana Texas Police Department reminds all drivers to be extra careful as school zones become more active and be aware of school bus safety.
Following these simple tips can help Texarkana children reach school safely and help drivers avoid costly fines and citations:
· Put away your cell phone. Cell phone use is banned in active school zones, and violators face fines of up to $200.
· Always obey school zone speed limits signs. Citations for speeding in school zones are higher than those not written in school zones.
· Drop off and pick up your children in your school’s designated areas, not in the middle of the street or in parking lots across the street.
· Keep an eye on children gathered at bus stops.
· Remember that children often behave unpredictably. Be alert for children who might suddenly dart across the street or between vehicles.
· Expect increased traffic in and around school zones, especially when parents and buses are delivering kids to school in the morning or picking them up in the afternoon. Allow extra time in your schedule for drop off and pick up – particularly during the first few weeks of school when the whole process seems more chaotic.
· Stop for flashing red lights on a school bus, regardless of which direction you are headed. Only continue your trip once the bus has moved, the flashing lights stop flashing, or the bus driver signals that it is safe to pass.
· When driving particularly near high school campuses, keep in mind that more of the motorists you encounter may new or inexperienced drivers. Be patient, forgiving, and remember to practice your defensive driving techniques.
Chief Dan Shiner said, “Nothing is more precious than the life of a child. We ask that everyone to slow down and pay attention to help ensure the safety of all our students.”