Mayor Malik D. Evans was joined by Rochester City School District Superintendent Dr. Carmine Peluso, Reconnect Rochester Interim Director Mary Staropoli, and administration leaders to urge Rochester area motorists to stay cautious and alert as students head back to school.
“The start of the new school year not only brings school buses and young pedestrians, but also more traffic on the roads,” said Evans. “Morning and afternoon commuters should keep this in mind and give themselves extra time to travel safely to ensure children stay safe.”
The City points to National Safety Council suggestions for back-to-school traffic safety:
If You're Dropping Off
Schools often have very specific drop-off procedures for the school year. Make sure you know them for the safety of all kids. The following apply to all school zones:
Don't double park; it blocks visibility for other children and vehicles
Don't load or unload children across the street from the school
Carpool to reduce the number of vehicles at the school
Sharing the Road with School Buses
If you're driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It will give you more time to stop once the yellow lights start flashing. It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children;
Never pass a bus from behind – or from either direction if you're on an undivided road – if it is stopped to load or unload children;
If the yellow or red lights are flashing and the stop arm is extended, traffic must stop;
The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus;
Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks.
Sharing the Road with Young Pedestrians
Don't block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn, forcing pedestrians to go around you; this could put them in the path of moving traffic;
In a school zone when flashers are blinking, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection;
Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign;
Take extra care to look out for children in school zones, near playgrounds and parks, and in all residential areas;
Don't honk or rev your engine to scare a pedestrian, even if you have the right of way;
Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians;
Always use extreme caution to avoid striking pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way.