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The original item was published from 8/24/2021 1:53:02 PM to 12/25/2021 12:00:03 AM.

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General Press Releases

Posted on: August 24, 2021

[ARCHIVED] Back to School Driving Safety

Back to School Driving Safety

Westmont, Illinois - Date Issued: August 24, 2021

The Westmont Police Department wants to remind everyone that school is back in session and motorists need to pay particular attention to students walking to and from school.  School days create both pedestrian and vehicular congestion: School buses picking up passengers, kids on bikes, parents dropping off and picking up their children.  It’s important for drivers to slow down and pay attention when kids are present as well as observe school zone speed limits and crossings, especially before and after school.

“We recently stepped up our enforcement of school speed zones and cited a number of motorists who were speeding, rolling through stop signs, and using their cell phones while driving,” said Westmont Police Chief Jim Gunther.  “Half of the people who were driving in an unsafe manner near and around our schools were local residents.  We need everyone to take a moment to hear this message and change their behaviors so that our children and community can be safe.”

A few school zone safety reminders can go a long way toward keeping children safe:

  • DO NOT BLOCK CROSSWALKS - Don’t block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn.  This may force pedestrians to walk around the car and put them in the path of moving traffic.
  • YIELD TO PEDESTRIANS - Stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection.
  • RESPECT SCHOOL PATROL OFFICERS - Always stop for a school patrol officer/crossing guard holding up a stop sign. Pay attention to and follow their directions.
  • OBSERVE SCHOOL SPEED ZONES & MARKED CROSSINGS - Look out for and observe school speed limits and pedestrian crossings.  These signs should serve as your warning to slow down and pay close attention to students who may be in the area.
  • DO NOT PASS STOPPED CARS - Never pass a vehicle that is stopped for pedestrians or unloading passengers.  
  • BE PATIENT - Always use extreme caution when pedestrians are present to avoid accidents, no matter who has the right of way.

Following are a few reminders regarding school bus safety: 

  • STOP FOR SCHOOL BUSES - It is illegal to pass a school bus that is stopped and has its flashers on.  If you are on a two-lane road or undivided road, then cars must stop from both directions.
  • LOOK FOR STUDENTS - Look for students who are getting on and off the bus to make sure they are safe and get to their destination safely before proceeding. 
  • KEEP YOUR DISTANCE BEHIND A BUS - 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.

For more information regarding back to school safety, visit the National Safety Council website.  


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