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Drivers: Slow Down! School's Back in Session

More car-pedestrian accidents involving school children happen between 3 and 7 p.m. than at any other time of day. (H. Armstrong Roberts/Getty Images)
More car-pedestrian accidents involving school children happen between 3 and 7 p.m. than at any other time of day. (H. Armstrong Roberts/Getty Images)
September 5, 2017

MADISON, Wis. – All across the United States at this time of year, 55 million children head back to school, walking and biking to class.

AAA Wisconsin reminds drivers that speed limits in school zones are reduced for a reason.

The number one thing to remember, according to Nick Jarmusz, public affairs director at AAA Wisconsin, is to slow down. He says to a driver, the difference between 25 and 35 miles an hour may not mean much.

"But it could be a world of difference when it comes to avoiding a crash with a pedestrian, and then if a crash does occur, that could be the difference between a fatality and simply a serious injury, or a serious injury and a minor injury," he states.

Jarmusz says research shows that more than a third of drivers roll through stop signs in school zones and residential neighborhoods, and this is a good time of year to remember to come to a full stop and check for children before proceeding.

According to Jarmusz, 3 to 7 p.m. is the most dangerous time during school days.

"Especially as we head into the fall and the sun starts setting sooner, those dusk hours when students may still be coming home, especially older students coming home from after school activities or sports practices or things like that, are still out there in the environment with less visibility," he points out.

Other reminders include eliminating distractions by not using your cell phone or eating while driving.

Jarmusz says parents also should take time to review the rules with their teen drivers. Teens driving to and from school present a major hazard.

"Not only to themselves but to other drivers on the road, and so we really encourage parents to review these graduated drivers license requirements, the restrictions on how many passengers they can have in the vehicle, and then also make sure that they are aware of who their teen may be driving with," he stresses.

AAA offers more tips regarding teen drivers at teendriving.aaa.com.


Tim Morrissey, Public News Service - WI