Every year in the United States there are around six million accidents on the road. A large number of these accidents involve pedestrians. In fact, in 2017, nearly 6,000 pedestrians died as a result of car accidents.
That is why a lot of schools have stricter driving restrictions surrounding them. This is in place to help protect students when they are coming to and from school.
If you’re not familiar with these restrictions then you could find yourself slammed with a speeding ticket! Fortunately, there are several things you can do when driving in school zones to stop this from happening.
Want to know more? Then read on to find out our top tips for driving safely in school zones near you!
Slow Down in School Zones
More often than not the speed limit in school zones is lower than it is on other residential roads in the area. This is to ensure that traffic slows down safely to protect the children using the roads.
Often a school zone speed limit will be 20 mph, however, some zones have a 15 mph limit. Because of this, you shouldn’t assume that the limit will be 20 mph.
Instead, while driving in school zone speed limit look for signs that indicate the limit for that specific zone. If in doubt, going slower won’t do you any harm.
Make sure that you slow down in plenty of time as you approach the school zone as well. This will ensure that you don’t have to break suddenly and get caught out by any speed camera!
Once you have passed by a school, keep an eye out for signs indicating you can increase your speed again. Do not do increase your speed until you see them. The last thing you want is to get caught for speeding up as you drive away from the zone!
Another common question people ask regarding school zones is what is the speed limit in a school zone when school is not in session? This can vary depending on the particular zone.
For example, some restrictions are only in action around school drop off and pick up times. To stop yourself from getting caught out by local school zone speed limits, check online before you drive. If you’re driving in a new area, play it safe and stick to the slowest speed limit just regardless of the time, just in case!
Pay Attention to Pedestrians
As a driver, you should always pay attention to pedestrians as well as other drivers. However, this is even more important when you are driving near a school.
School children are much more likely to make poor judgment calls when it comes to crossing the road, as they are less aware of the dangers at hand. Because of this, it is your responsibility as a driver to be mindful of this when driving near a school.
Failure to do so could result in a serious injury, which is much worse than a speeding ticket!
Even if you aren’t going over the speed limit, driving when distracted in a school zone can be very dangerous.
Make sure that you’re familiar with the crosswalks in your area. Crosswalks are often marked with white road markings and a yellow crossing sign. Some schools even have alert lights or crossing assistants working at peak times.
However, you should remember that not all kids will cross at the designated crossing area. So keep an eye out for rogue children while driving near a school!
Be Ready for Peak Traffic Times
Getting caught in traffic can be stressful and this can have a serious impact on your driving.
That’s why it’s a good idea to try and steer clear of school zones during peak times if you can. This includes the morning drop off and afternoon pick up times. If you have to travel in these times, driving through a school zone could significantly slow you down. It might be faster to go around the school zone.
If you do have to drive through a school zone, keep in mind when it will be busy and allow extra time for your journey. This will stop you from feeling stressed while you’re driving.
Respect Your Fellow Road Users
Keep in mind that you aren’t the only one who is using the road around schools. In fact, a lot of moms and dads will be hurrying during drop off and pick up. Being respectful of other drivers will ensure that everyone gets where they need to safely.
As well as observing the speed limits that are in place, you should also keep an eye out for any additional signage. This includes giving other vehicles the right of way where you should and not parking in ‘no parking’ zones.
Doing this prevents the streets from getting backed up with drivers and improves visibility for everyone using the road.
You should also keep in mind that around a school zone road sign, cars won’t be the only vehicles on the road. It’s also likely that you will encounter school buses on your journey. These require a lot more maneuvering space, so you should respect this when driving on the road with them.
This is incredibly important as it ensures that you are seen to be driving responsibly as well as within the speed limit. If you try to hurry through or rush past cars to get to work then you may be accused of reckless or dangerous driving.
Use These Tips to Protect Road Users
When driving in school zones it is very important that you keep in mind additional road restrictions that may be in place. This will protect other road users and prevents you from getting unnecessary driving fines.
If you have recently received a speeding ticket and want to clear it, get in touch today. We’re here to help!