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Editorial: The right-of-way

['Editorial']
['Editorial']

It’s that time of year again with buses hitting the roads bringing students to school for another school year.

In some cases parents will be driving their sons and daughters to school and in other cases, if they live close enough, some students will be walking.

Great care is taken in warning young people of the dangers of traffic and often parents go to the bus stop with younger children to ensure they get across the road safe and onto the bus.

Buses are now equipped with all kinds of safety devises from flashing lights to flip out arms and lots of reflective tape.

Sadly there are some drivers that, no matter how many warning signs are up, will still go around a bus even with all the flashing lights engaged.

What’s the big hurry? A few minutes out of your life to ensure that a child gets across the street safely and onto or off a bus should be a top priority.

Most drivers have a good idea of where the bus stops are in their community and are aware, or should be, of where crosswalks are located near schools.

In recent years many towns have those signs which record a vehicle’s speed and they are often set up near school zone.

In Stephenville, they’ve been effective in slowing down most of the traffic when drivers compare the speed they are doing with the posted speed in a school zone.

The town has also installed a flashing light system at the crosswalk on Main Street near McDonald’s, where a lot of students go at dinner hour.

It seems to be working for the best part, but some drivers still tend to go around other vehicles that are stopped taking a left and despite the flashing lights.

Several more of these are planned for crosswalk intersections in front of Stephenville Middle and Primary Schools and will work well at those locations if drivers don’t make their way around stopped vehicles when the lights are flashing.

People just seem to be in too much of a rush these days and don’t seem to allow themselves enough time to leave from home and get to their destination.

The thing is, as a driver, if you hit a child on a crosswalk you’ll be held up a lot longer than that mad dash to get through and probably end up getting charges against you.

In the end, you’ll wonder if the rush to get that coffee or getting to work on time was all worth it.

School is starting this week, folks, and some young people tend to just walk right across the road without looking both ways.

The onus is on the driver – the person behind the wheel of that vehicle that a child doesn’t have a chance against – to be prudent and drive safely where kids may be crossing the street and especially in school zones.

 

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