Regina, Saskatchewan -- September 4, 2016 -- With classes back in session, Saskatchewan General Insurance (SGI) is putting the spotlight on school zone safety.
Police will be watching for traffic violations in and around school zones, including motorists speeding, driving distracted, failing to obey stop signs or yield signs, failing to yield for pedestrians, failing to obey crossing guards or failing to obey school bus cross arms and flashing lights.
“Children are among the most vulnerable road users and as a motorist it’s your duty to look out for them,” said Earl Cameron, Executive Vice-President of the Auto Fund. “It’s critical to slow down and give the road your full attention in school zones. Not only does the small size of a child make them difficult to see, they can also be unpredictable as they may not yet understand rules of the road.”
During drop-off times school zones can become extremely congested with traffic and children, making it even more difficult to identify hazards. In 2014, there were 40 collisions in school zones in the province, resulting in 15 injuries.
Throughout the 2016 school year, some school buses across the province will begin to use exterior overhead amber flashing light systems when preparing to stop, in addition to overhead red flashing lights that are used when a bus is stopped to pick up or drop off students. The amber lights provide an advanced warning to motorists, allowing them more time to slow down and safely react. Bylaws dictating the use of warning lights (and school bus traffic control devices, such as a stop arm) are dependent on the municipality.
To learn more about school zones or pedestrian safety, please visit sgi.sk.ca.