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Tips for Driving in a School Zone

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School Bus

Photo: Pexels

With the school year officially in full-swing, weekday morning and evening commutes are often interrupted by the flashing lights of a “School Zone.” We all know what this means – slow down to the posted speed limit – but there’s a lot more to it than that. Here are a few things to keep an eye out for when driving through a school zone.

Kids crossing the street

This is the most obvious. The main reason school zones exist is because many children walk home from school, which requires crossing a main road. Keep an eye out for kids running into the street, but also at crosswalks – in school zones, you’re likely to find more crosswalks than normal. Make a full, complete stop at every stop sign and look both ways to see if there are kids waiting to cross.

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School buses

When kids leave school for the day, so do their rides. And in many situations, it’s required by law to stop for school buses. Watch for school buses and stop when necessary.

Added congestion and traffic

Parents often flock to the school at the beginning and end of the day. Be prepared for slowed speeds, thanks to the reduced speed limit, and added cars. It’ll take you some extra time to get wherever you need to go.

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Avoid passing

If you’re behind a slow vehicle, resist the urge to pass them. In school zones, it can be difficult to see what is ahead of the car slowing them down – they may see something, like a child or an upcoming crosswalk, that you don’t.

When driving in school zones, “better safe than sorry” is a good motto to follow. Slow down, keep your eyes on the road, and take your time.