As millions of Texan children return to school this month, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) is reminding motorists and parents to take precautions to avoid traffic crashes and injuries in and around school buses.
Last year, there were 765 traffic crashes in school zones in Texas, killing 1 and injuring 15 seriously. The most common causes of these crashes were lack of speed control, driver inattention and failure to yield, when making a left turn on a private road or at a stop sign. .
In addition, last year there were 2,357 traffic crashes involving school buses in Texas, which left 5 dead and 42 seriously injured. The speed and inattention of the driver were also the main factors in these crashes.
TxDOT offers the following back-to-school tips for drivers and students.
Tips for children who walk or cycle to school:
– Always walk on sidewalks when available.
– Cross the street at intersections or signposted pedestrian crossings. Look left, right, and left again before continuing.
– Always obey the brigadiers.
– Make eye contact with drivers before crossing the street. Never assume that a driver sees you.
– Look for traffic when getting off a bus or behind parked cars.
– Always wear a helmet when cycling.
– Don’t be distracted by electronic devices that distract your eyes and ears from the road.
– Follow all traffic rules, signs and signals.
Tips for drivers sharing the road with school buses:
– Never a tailgate. Follow at a safe distance, keeping in mind that school buses make frequent stops.
– Stop for flashing red lights or a stop sign on a school bus, no matter which direction you are heading. Continue your journey after the bus has moved, the flashing lights stop flashing, or the bus driver signals that you can pass.
– Violations can result in a fine of up to $ 1,250 for a first violation.
Tips for driving in school zones:
– Stay alert and put your phone away. It is against the law to use a portable electronic device while driving in an active school zone.
– Always obey the speed limit signs in school zones. Keep in mind that traffic fines typically double in school zones.
– Drop off and pick up your kids in designated areas of your school, not in the middle of the street.
– Keep an eye out for children gathered at bus stops.
– Watch for children who might cross the street or between vehicles.
TxDOT urges drivers to slow down, be careful and obey all traffic laws as the new school year begins to keep children safe and avoid costly fines and tickets.