Parents, Children and Motorists Need to Take Extra Safety Precautions for the New School Year
Hutchinson, KS -- (ReleaseWire) -- 08/26/2015 --Every year, school zones and bus stops pose a significant safety threat for school children. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motor vehicles kill 500 students between the ages of 5-18 each year in school zones. There is also an estimated 21,000 students injured each year traveling to or from school. Seventy-seven percent of these victims were pedestrians struck by a school bus or another vehicle (NHTSA).
"Speeding motorists are the major cause of school zone vehicle accidents and fatalities," says Scott Mann, auto accident attorney of Mann Law Offices. "When this is combined with children crossing intersections, running into the street, playing close to the road, and crossing behind or in front of vehicles, it can result in tragic consequences."
There has been a proven correlation between a rise in pedestrian deaths and speeding vehicles. Two-thirds of motorists driving through school zones exceed the posted speed limit (NHTSA). This is why it is extremely important for motorists to slow down and be extra cautious. Many motorists also drive distracted because of cell phones, or they are simply ignoring their surroundings while "auto-pilot" driving.
Parents and children must practice extra caution in school zones. Students should be especially aware of traffic when 10 feet in front, behind, or on either side of the school bus. While waiting for the bus, children should keep six feet away as the bus approaches. Wait for the bus driver to give you permission to board the bus.
"Children are not the best at accurately judging traffic depth. Motorists need to look for children crossing the street on foot or bicycle, and anticipate those who might attempt to cross," says Mike Wyatt, auto accident attorney of Mann Law Offices. "Children should use the help of a crossing guard or parent for busy intersections, and stay away from the street if you stop to play or have a conversation with friends."