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Many schools across the country have been closed for months, and some are now reopening. Virtual learning meant virtually no school traffic. Kids walked out of the comfort of their bedroom into the family homework area (aka dining room table, living room sofa, makeshift desk) which meant they skipped that morning bus ride. With some school districts opening back up to in-person learning, bus routes may return to your area and it's important to drive safely to protect everyone. Sober driving is a great start but make sure you also avoid distracted driving.
Distracted drivers and people in a rush, among other groups, can also make the roads very dangerous. Make sure you allow extra time in your commute. When buses stop to pick up students, you and other drivers need to stop too.
There were 264 school-age children killed in school transportation related accidents from 2008-2017. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the greatest risk to a child isn’t riding a bus, but approaching or leaving one.
Yellow flashing lights mean slow down — don’t speed up — because the bus is preparing to stop. There are likely students waiting to get on the bus or parents waiting nearby to pick up children.
Red flashing lights mean stop — and wait at least 20 feet behind the bus — because children are getting on or off the school bus. Stay stopped until the red lights stop flashing, the extended stop-arm is withdrawn, and the bus begins moving.
Even when lights aren’t flashing, watch for children, particularly in the morning or mid-afternoon, around school arrival and dismissal times. Be alert as you back out of a driveway, or drive through a neighborhood, school zone or bus stop.
We work hard each day to help keep the roads safe by separating drinking and driving. Do your part to keep our roads safe! If you struggle monitoring your alcohol consumption and worry about how that can affect your driving, please contact us at Smart Start of Alabama to see how we can help.
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