Back to School Safety Tips
As children begin heading back to school, it is important to be aware of the hazards that this time of the year presents. The National Safety Council (NSC) and the National Traffic Highway Traffic Association (NHTSA) provide some helpful back to school safety tips for parents, children, and drivers. By taking a few precautions, we can help to reduce the number of school-related car accidents that occur when kids walk, ride their bikes, or drive to school.
Watch out for school buses on the roads – the NHTSA reports that 95 people were fatally injured in school-bus related crashes in 2017. Drivers should leave more distance between themselves and school buses and use caution when driving behind them. It is illegal to pass a school bus that is loading or unloading children, so be sure to leave plenty of time to break when the yellow lights begin flashing.
Teach children how to safety get on and off the school bus. The NSC suggests that they stand approximately six feet away from the curb, wait for the bus driver to tell them to board, and make eye contact with the bus driver before crossing the street. When exiting the bus, children should wait for it to come to a complete stop, look both ways, and walk toward the curb.
Picking Up or Dropping Off
Obey the school’s procedures when picking up or dropping off children. Do not double park in school zones, drive through bus loading zones, or drop kids off across the street from the school. Safety experts suggest carpooling to reduce the number of vehicles at and around the school.
There were 5,977 pedestrian fatalities in 2017, according to the NHTSA. Pedestrian accidents often occur because drivers cannot see them crossing the street. Therefore, the NHTSA recommends that drivers look out for pedestrians, especially at nighttime and during inclement weather. Pedestrians should walk on sidewalks, cross at crosswalks, wear bright, reflective clothing, and make eye contact with drivers whenever possible.
The NHTSA reports that 783 bicyclists were fatally injured in traffic wrecks in 2017. During all seasons, bicyclist fatalities occurred most often between six and nine p.m. Drivers should be on alert for an increased number of bicyclists as the new school year begins – obey the speed limit, yield to bike riders, and share the road.
Many young drivers will be heading back to school with newly-obtained drivers’ licenses. According to the NSC, car accidents are the leading cause of death for teenagers and NHTSA highway fatality numbers reveal that in 2017, more than 37,100 people died in motor vehicle wrecks. Inexperience and distracted driving are often contributing factors. Therefore, it is important for parents to practice driving with their teens frequently and teach them safe driving behavior.
DC Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Offices of Duane O. King Represent Those Injured in Back to School Accidents
If you are injured in a car, bicycle, or pedestrian accident, a DC car accident lawyer at the Law Offices of Duane O. King can help you get the compensation to which you are entitled. For a free consultation, please complete our online contact form or call us at 202-331-1963. We fight for injured accident victims across Washington D.C. and Maryland.