On March 26th, a child died in front of a Modesto school when he ran in front of a bus. A few years ago, another child was hit in front of a school when he was run over by his own father’s car. At another school, a child on a bicycle was hit by a car. These accidents should not be happening.Every school day in valley communities, a mad rush of traffic occurs before and after each session. Large numbers of parents ferry their children as close to the school entrance as they can and drop them off on either side of the street.
Some children cross the street without paying attention to traffic. Some wear ear plugs that prevent them from hearing approaching cars. Many near misses occur daily. The rush results in mass chaos as traffic jams develop around the schools. Drivers deviate from the rules of the road. Unsafe practices by parents and children occur at every school daily.
Relatively few children walk to school anymore, yet travelling to school seems more dangerous than in the days when everyone walked. The chaos at the schools is beyond the ability of police to permanently solve the problem. Too little common sense is used by parents or children.
Find Solutions By Avoiding Risk
Can simple actions be taken to reduce the risk to children?
Loading zones should only be on the school’s side of the street, with no stopping or parking allowed on the other side. No “U” turns should be allowed anywhere near schools.
In Nevada, the school speed limit is 15mph. Would a lower speed limit around schools improve safety? Can children better learn to exercise caution when crossing a street? Should more crosswalks with flashing lights be installed? Should some streets around schools be closed for safety?
A Cooperative Effort Would Help
Parents who truly care about the safety of their children would be wise to take a close look at their child’s school to determine whether safety practices can be improved. School administrators should work with city officials to see whether safety around their schools can be improved. These should be ongoing reviews, not just one time events.
While the prevention of every accident may be impossible, the frequency can be reduced if the effort is made.