Friday, September 1, 2023

Safety tips for back to school season

It's that time of year again when students across New Jersey head back to school. That means traffic gets back to normal but it also means keeping safety in mind whether you're getting behind the wheel, hopping on your bike, or going for a stroll.
For drivers, never pass a school bus with its stop sign extended and red lights flashing. Not only would doing so put students at risk, it’s also against the law. In New Jersey, you must stop at least 25 feet from a school bus with flashing lights on a road with no dividers.

Slow down for safety, especially in school zones, which have lower speed limits.  In Hudson County, Hoboken has gone a step further this year and reduced the speed limit to 15 mph in school zones. Be extra alert for children walking and biking to and from school.

Avoiding distractions and stopping for people crossing will make the roads safer for everyone and help you avoid a ticket. Every intersection has a crosswalk, even if it is not marked. Always yield to people crossing before turning at a stop sign or a traffic light.

If a vehicle is stopped at a crosswalk, an intersection, or near a school, do not pass it. The is probably stopped to allow people to cross the street.

There are some simple steps students can also take to help make them more visible to drivers:

  • Use crosswalks and crossing at intersections from corner to corner
  • Do not cross between parked vehicles, which can make it difficult for drivers to see people trying to cross
  • Wait for the green light or walk sign at signalized intersections
  • Always look both ways before stepping into the road

It’s also safer to walk on sidewalks. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic so that you can see approaching vehicles.

If you’re riding a bike to school, remember to ride in the same direction as traffic and wear a helmet.

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