School Year Safety Reminders and Tips

The beginning of the new school year is approaching. Whether it’s preschool, elementary school, middle school, high school, or college, the start of school means increased pedestrian and vehicle traffic in neighborhoods and around schools throughout the City of Elkins. Traffic safety is a high priority for the City of Elkins Police Department. We want to remind commuters, parents, students, pedestrians, and bicyclists to:

  • STOP for any school bus that has lights and “stop arm” activated to load and unload children. Drivers must STOP in both directions. It is illegal to pass a stopped bus that is loading or unloading children.
  • Be alert when around school zones.
  • Leave earlier to accommodate the increased congestion and delay surrounding school start and end times.
  • Familiarize yourself, and your children, with laws and safety tips related to school buses, school zones, crosswalks, and signals.

SCHOOL BUS:

  • Buses are the safest mode of transportation for children; however, children need to be aware of the bus “danger zone”, blind spots around the bus where the driver may not be able to see them. Children should maintain a distance of 10 feet away from the front, sides, and rear of the bus.
  • Children should wait until the bus stops completely and the driver signals that it is okay to board; if crossing the street is necessary, wait for the driver to indicate it is safe to cross.

MOTORISTS:

  • Obey all school speed zones.
  • Slow down and be alert for children, walking or biking; they may be difficult to see and may appear suddenly and unexpectedly.
  • In low light and bad weather, pay extra attention around bus stops and school zones.
  • DO NOT be distracted by electronic devices; STAY FOCUSED on the roadway.

WALKERS:

  • Children should walk with a responsible adult or in a group.
  • Walk on sidewalks, when available.
  • Pay attention to the road and where you are going; do not play with, push, or shove others.
  • Wear brightly colored clothing for better visibility.
  • Cross at the proper crosswalks, street corners, or intersections. Obey traffic rules when crossing.

Thank You for taking the time to read these safety reminder tips. As always, if you have any concerns of school safety, within the City of Elkins, please contact us.

Sincerely,

Chief G. Galloway