When school days return, so do driving hazards. Morning and afternoon, the roadways clog with school buses, harried parents, inexperienced teenage drivers, and walkers and bikers who may not look both ways. It's time for everyone to use extra caution. Watch for signs indicating school zones, which might not have been in effect during the summer, and obey posted speed limits. Here are some other reminders:
- Take an extra moment to look for children at intersections and crosswalks.
- Don't talk on the phone or text while driving. These behaviors are now illegal in many school zones.
- Look twice before backing out of driveways and parking spaces, and go slowly. The nonprofit KidsandCars.org reports that every week more than 50 children in the United States are killed or injured by drivers backing over them.
- Keep your distance from school buses, and never pass a bus when it's loading or unloading.
- In heavy traffic, maintain a safe distance — at least three seconds — behind other cars, and avoid the urge to weave or cut through parking lots.
- If you find yourself rushed every morning, try waking up and leaving a few minutes earlier, or take a different route to avoid traffic congestion.